On Wednesday, February 24, Steven Goff reported on Twitter that the Colorado Rapids were looking to acquire center back Michael Edward’s Discovery Rights from DC United for an unspecified amount of Allocation Money.
Update on this Nov. item: Michael Edwards is returning stateside to play for Colorado, I'm told. Rapids are making a trade with D.C. United for his #MLS rights, presumably involving allocation money.— Steven Goff (@SoccerInsider) February 25, 2021
Edwards is a 20-year-old center back currently playing with Wolfsburg II in Germany. The Virginia native and former DC United Academy product has been with Wolfsburg since the summer of 2019, and started six matches this season in the German fourth division. If the Rapids acquired his rights, he could be signed as a Homegrown Player, and therefore not take up a senior roster slot for the Rapids. If they acquire his rights, they’d also have to acquire Edwards himself from Wolfsburg, either for a transfer fee this winter or for free this summer when Edwards’ contract expires.
If this deal does come to fruition, what does it mean for Colorado?
This move seems to be one of depth/future for the Rapids, as it doesn’t seem likely Edwards would take the spot of either Lalas Abubakar or Danny Wilson in central defense. But, with the departure of Abdul Rwatubyaye this offseason, there is an extra spot for depth at center back. Kortne Ford will hopefully be returning from injury this year and Drew Moor signed a one-year extension earlier this winter. Along with Auston Trusty, that means the Rapids currently have five center backs on the roster. Edwards makes six if the signing occurs.
Just pure speculation now, but perhaps there’s an underlying reason the Rapids are looking to add Edwards, other than his youth and his potential status on the roster. Perhaps Ford won’t be returning as soon as they hoped from his ACL injury, or maybe the veteran Drew Moor doesn’t have enough left in him to play this season. I suspect the former is the most likely. I think the most likely scenario is Ford spends a season with the Colorado Springs Switchbacks to get his groove back after missing two full seasons with injury. Trusty would serve as the primary back-up at center back, while Edwards and Moor would fight for the fourth center back role. It’s also possible that Edwards will spend time with the Switchbacks this year. We reached out to the club, but they declined to comment on the rumor.
Regardless, if this signing goes through and the Rapids add Edwards, they will have a plethora of options at center back.
The Rapids declined to comment on the rumor at this time.