Jake Edwards

Playing Career: 2008 - 2009
Debut: Round 1, 2008 vs Richmond, aged 20 years, 74 days
Carlton Player No. 1 108
Games: 5
Goals: 4
Guernsey 37 (2006 - 2009)
Last game: Round 15, 2008 vs St Kilda, aged 20 years, 187 days
Height: 192cm
Weight: 88kg
DOB: 6 January, 1988

Edwards was drafted with pick #36 in the 2005 National Draft, taken as a bottom aged player for that draft. A footballer of great lineage, his father is Allan 'Butch' Edwards, his grandfather Arthur Edwards, and his great grandfather Frank 'Dolly' Aked Sr, all of whom have played at senior VFL/AFL leavel.

Edwards would play most of the 2006 season for the Northern Blues up forward, and was named as an emergency for Round 22 of his debut year, a fine effort for the young man. A bulked up Edwards would show promise for the Bullants, again up forward, in 2007, before being injured in Round 6. Thereafter, it was a tough slog from their on in for Edwards, as he failed to find any form whatsoever on his return from injury, but he persevered and was retained by the Blues for 2008.

With a number of recruits for 2008, there seemed to be some competition for spots but an early injury to Brad Fisher gave Edwards an opportunity, and in the last 2 practice games of the pre-season he kicked 2 bags of 3 to demonstrate an ability to support Fevola up forward, and still snag a goal or 3. These performances were enough to see Carlton Coach Brett Ratten announce Edwards' debut selection for Round 1 of the main season, a disappointing game for many, but one in which young Edwards' would take 8 marks and demonstrate beautiful hands as a leading forward. Edwards would also kick his first goal in the AFL in the first quarter of his debut, a dribble kick from a loose ball 2 metres out! He would follow up the next week against St Kilda and kick another goal.

Jake was dropped after the St Kilda but earned a recall for the Round 9 victory against Fremantle. Jake played a very good game where he picked up 12 disposals, 9 marks and a goal. He returned for 2 games mid-season, but after a season at the Bullants in 2009, was advised that he would be delisted come season's end, after 5 games in Navy Blue. Edwards was then invited to train with the Western Bulldogs over summer in hope of gaining a spot onto their 2010 playing list, but did not get picked up at the Kennel. He then headed to the Ballarat League to play with Darley. Edwards signed on to play with VFL Club Port Melbourne in 2011, where he was a member of their premiership side.

Carlton recruited Edwards from the Western Jets U/18's, he had previously played at Melton.

Mike and Dan

Mike & Dan with Jake Edwards

With football smarts, pace, natural ability and an impeccable football pedigree, Jake Edwards has been a tantalising prospect since the Blues picked him up in the 2005 AFL National Draft. A good first year at the club culminated in Edwards being included in the extended squad for the last round of 2006, however the young Blue struggled last season with injury. With his ankle problems behind him Edwards will be looking to consolidate on a good pre-season, and Mike and Dan caught up with him to talk about his 2008 prospects.

What kind of role do you see yourself playing at the club this year? Would you be happy just to crack it for a game, or do you hope to string a few together by the end of the year?

At this stage I am hoping to string a few games together by the end of the year. It is more a case of getting as much experience under my belt and building some good momentum leading into the season. Whether I get game time or not will depend on a lot of things such as opportunities, our forward set up and the opposition set up.

How have you found your game time in the NAB Cup? You seem to be played as a leading pocket - are you comfortable that deep or do you prefer to be up the ground?

Yeah in the last few years I have been up the ground across Half Forward, but I don’t mind being back a bit further in the pocket. It gives me more time to read the game and it has been good working with Fev. It is great experience to be playing alongside someone like him.

It was a good win against Port’s Under 25’s, but then a 10 minute smashing at the hands of the Hawks seems to have raised more questions than answers. What can you tell us about the mood in the camp at the moment?

The mood is still positive, the Blues are just trying to get themselves up week in week out and prepare for the season. It is a really exciting part of the year, we are feeling good as a group and obviously waiting for Judd to come into the team as well which will add an extra level.

Fev said after the win against Port that he would be disappointed if Carlton didn't make the 8 this year. How do you think Carlton will go this year?

I reckon we will be knocking on the door of the final eight, and I’m in the same boat as Fev on that one Playing finals is why we play footy, that is what we aim for.

We have a new confidence in the group and the players we have, and we are learning a lot from each other. There are lots of young boys at the club who want to achieve a lot as a group. The young players are really close as a group and all of us have a new hunger to play senior footy, we want to push the middle tier of players up a level and move the club forward.

Who is training the house down at this time of the year? Any surprises?

We have all been pretty good! Ratts and leadership boys speak very highly of Hampo, and he has really boosted his confidence after finishing off last year well and taking steps this year. Everyone is training well at the moment, and we have new players like Armfield coming in as a mature draft pick and he has a lot to offer.

There will be a lot of interest in the first five rounds or so to see who is going to get a game. My goal is to play NAB cup, whether it is the NAB Challenge games or the main ones. So far I have played 3 out of 3 which is highly important. I have put myself in good stead, and whether I get a game or not will depend on the match-ups, but I can tell you I will put my hand up any day of the week to get into the team!

Which coaches have you been spending the most time with this year?

I’ve been doing a fair bit of work with Monty (Brett Montgomery), having him down here as the new forward coach has been great. He has got a lot of confidence in me, and Ratts has been terrific and has been a real positive for us since taking over as coach.

I have also been working a lot with our sprint coach, Chris, and I work away from the club with him and he has been great. Braddles comes down at every main training session, and he loves having a joke and a laugh with the boys. He has a real aura, and so does Sticks who gets around after training when we are icing up and he helps in a lot of areas that aren’t just related to footy.

Ratts has made one point that he wants all players to be doing something outside of footy. Rod Ashman has been really helping with setting up the boys outside of footy and stressed the importance of having other interests.

I have doing courses in myotherapy and personal training. Not only has it given me some interests outside of footy, but I have a better understanding of how to get the best to get out of my own body. I really enjoy it and want to keep doing it.

Jake, is it fair to say that your 07 was a disappointment after your 06? You were close to selection at the end of 06 - what happened?

Near the start of the year, at about round 5, I had a hairline fracture in my heel and missed 4-5 weeks. Towards the end of the season I dislocated my ankle and ruptured my tendons and missed 6 or 7.

I was lucky I didn’t need surgery, I could have come back for last few games of the year, but there was no point rushing back and if I had it may have affected my pre-season. My ankle is great now, and I am doing a hell of a lot of rehab.

After I came back from injury it was a case of getting miles in your legs. I didn’t lose that much fitness as I did that many kilometres in the pool and on the grinder. The good part is that I had a few weeks head start on the other boys for my pre-season and it gave me the chance to work more on my fitness.

How have you changed physically since you joined the Blues and have a couple of pre-seasons into you. Have you concentrated on adding strength, adding speed, or any specific area in particular?

I want to play forward, up around Fev, so I have worked on my speed since I got here. Speed is one of those things where you have either got it or you don’t. As for strength, I am not worried about putting on size, I just want to become strong and have tried to strengthen myself over the past couple of years. But one thing I want to do right now is just get on park and build confidence in myself at this level.

You've seen a lot of changes since you arrived at the club, a new coach, president, and the recruitment of Judd. How does a young player such as yourself deal with so much change?

Well that’s life isn’t it? Life isn’t always cruisy and it is the same with football, there are always things that are chopping and changing. As you would know the lifespan of a footballer is 3.7 years, so you have to deal with whatever comes your way and you have got to have interests outside of footy.

As I mentioned I’m doing my courses outside of the club, and I have just bought a house too which has taken up a lot of my time! I am moving in soon with my older brother and girlfriend. I am broke now so if any of the boys are reading this, next time it is not my shout!

In The Age just after you were drafted, your family said that you were the best of the whole clan. Do you feel extra pressure being the final piece of the puzzle?

I think my Pop who passed away last year said that, which was a big rap. Everywhere I go with my old man, someone will always say how good he was, and then you get told you are going to be the best of the lot so it is a bit of pressure! Only I can control that though, and I just need to make the most of the opportunities I get.

There’s a few Blues with famous footy lineage – do you, Waite, Murphy, Gibbs and Blackwell ever sit around and fight over bragging rights for your Dads?

  • laughs* No not at all, we are pretty quiet when it comes to talking about your parents, especially amongst the playing group.

Has your old man got used to barracking for Carlton yet?

I tell you what, I have nearly got him! He has been buying a membership, and I reckon I am half way there. He even made the trip to Adelaide, but he doesn’t like going to the footy because he reckons the seats are too small *laughs*.

Here is your chance to comment on your team-mates… Is there any information you can reveal to us?

Richard Hadley is a really eligible bachelor who has come down from Brisbane. He plays good footy and I want to put the word out and hope that he meets a lovely lady soon!

Jake Edwards is keen to capitalise on an extended pre-season which has seen him play all senior games so far, including a highly encouraging performance against Port Adelaide. As a youngster who is making progress on and off the field, a fully-fit Edwards now has the opportunity to push for a spot in the opening round blockbuster against Richmond.

Blueseum: A summary of Edwards' playing career | Broken Father-Sons | Other Family Links | Edwards' Blueseum Image Gallery
Contributors to this page: Jarusa , molsey , Bombasheldon , pblue , WillowBlue , true_blue24 and dgreen2 .
Page last modified on Monday 30 of January, 2023 02:01:46 AEDT by Jarusa.

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