As a Foundation Academy freshman, Edward Byrd was named to the Florida Athletic Coaches Association District 11 Defensive Team.
As a freshman on the Foundation Academy football team, Edward Byrd is a big kid with a big game. Byrd switches his time playing on both the offensive and defensive lines, but it’s on the D-line where he has grabbed the most attention as he was recently named to the Florida Athletic Coaches Association District 11 Defensive Team.
What’s it like playing on the varsity team as a freshman?
It’s a pretty fun experience coming from eighth grade and playing with people like (Andrew) Johns and Warren (Sapp II) and being able to play with my cousins. Coach Lord and the (other coaches) have given me good advice on how to get better. But it’s been really fun getting to play with some of my best friends this freshman year.
Is it a challenge to compete against guys who are older than you?
I don’t really consider it too much of a challenge. Growing up, my mom and dad would always put me up against people older than me, so it just seems natural.
What is the most challenging part about playing on the offensive/defensive line?
To be honest, it would probably be watching film on my position — trying to figure out exactly what they’re doing and learning both sides of the line.
Which is tougher — offensive line or defensive line?
Me, personally, I feel like our offense is more challenging, because defense is really simple — they make it really simple for us. It’s ‘See ball, get ball’ — that’s the principal of football.
What are the best words of advice that you’ve been given about football?
The first one is from my cousin, Isaiah. I told him I wanted to be the No. 1 recruit in the class of 2023, and he told me basically, ‘It’s not going to come easy, so you have to outwork everybody.’ I try to keep that in mind. And my grandma — who passed away when I was young — she always told me that, ‘The only way to get what you want is to go out and go get it,’ and I think that is probably the most important thing that I have been told.
Football is time-consuming and requires a lot of hard work. What keeps you motivated to keep going?
That’s probably actually the easiest thing when it comes to football. My mom, my brothers and my grandma are the things that motivate me, because I know where we come from. We didn’t come from the best part of town, so I want to make a different change for them — show my brothers and siblings that they can do it, and football is something that God just made me good at.