CREW CHIEF: Darian Grubb (2015) / Dave Rogers (2016)
TEAM: Joe Gibbs Racing
TOP 5s: 7
TOP 10s: 15
LAPS LED: 376
WHAT WENT RIGHT: Edwards had a good first season at Joe Gibbs Racing in 2015, finishing 5th, after 11 prior seasons with Roush Fenway Racing. Edwards was the second-highest finishing driver with his new team, behind champion Kyle Busch. … Ironically, Edwards had very similar stats at his new home as he did in his last season at RFR: same number of wins (2) and top-five finishes (7), and one more top-10 finish (15 in 2015 vs. 14 in 2014). … Edwards enjoyed the best single season qualifying average of his Sprint Cup career (9.1). He also rebounded from leading just 135 laps in 2014 to leading 376 in 2015.
WHAT WENT WRONG: It’s hard to find much wrong with Edwards’ overall performance in 2015, other than he came up short of reaching the Championship 4 round. … About the only thing that is notable – and still somewhat difficult to understand – is what prompted JGR to replace crew chief Darian Grubb after the season Edwards had.
WHAT TO EXPECT IN 2016: Edwards will have his second crew chief in as many seasons at JGR, as Dave Rogers moves from serving as Denny Hamlin’s crew chief to replace Grubb atop the No. 19 pit box. … Edwards seemed to fit very nicely into JGR’s overall scheme in his first season and should make the bond even closer and tighter in 2016. … Edwards is one of the biggest proponents of the new lower downforce package that will be used in Sprint Cup racing this season. Edwards even won one of the races (at Darlington) where the new package was tested at in 2015.