James ranks third in all-time University of Miami rushing yards. He was the only running back in the university's history to post two consecutive seasons with 1,000-plus rushing yards, and he ranks first in school history with the most 100-plus rushing games (14). All single season records held by James have since been broken by former Cleveland Browns running back Willis McGahee.
Edgerrin was inducted into the University of Miami Sports Hall of Fame on April 23, 2009 at its 41st Annual Induction Banquet at Jungle Island in Miami.
The Indianapolis Colts selected James in the first round of the 1999 NFL Draft with the fourth overall pick. James signed a seven-year, $49 million rookie contract. Some critics believed that the Colts made a mistake by choosing James over the reigning Heisman Trophy winner Ricky Williams, but he proved to be the right choice for the Colts offense.
James quieted the critics and was an immediate success, and was named the 1999 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year by the Associated Press. James won the NFL rushing title in his first two seasons. He's the most recent player to win the NFL rushing title in his rookie season. Six games into the 2001 season, he tore his ACL. After the 2002 season, where James failed to regain his form of 1999 and 2000, many believed that James would never recover from his knee injury.
However, James rebounded well in 2003, and re-established his place as one of the top running backs in the NFL in 2004 and 2005, with over 1,500 rushing yards in both seasons.
James left Indianapolis as their all time leading rusher with 9,226 yards. James was given a Super Bowl ring from the Colts after he left the team in 2006, when they won Super Bowl XLI.
James signed a four-year, $30 million deal with the Arizona Cardinals on March 23, 2006. James went through a stretch of 10 games out of the 2008 season where he carried the ball only 20 times. Through this time, Ken Whisenhunt brought him in strictly as a pass protector. In Week 17 against the Seattle Seahawks, James carried the ball 14 times for 100 yards. James said he would not come back to Arizona following the 2009 NFL playoffs, despite a year left on his contract. In the Cardinals' first playoff game since 1998, James averaged 4.7 yards per carry and ran for 100 yards. In the Divisional round of the playoffs, James rushed for 57 yards and a touchdown in the Cardinals' upset victory over the heavily favored Carolina Panthers. James rushed for 73 yards in the Cardinals' 32-25 win over the Philadelphia Eagles in the NFC Championship game. James rushed 9 times for 33 yards in the Cardinals' 27-23 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl XLIII.
His long-time girlfriend, the mother of his children, died of cancer in April 2009. After this, he asked for his release from the team, and the Cardinals honored his request on April 28.
After spending the 2009 offseason grieving with his four children and declining NFL offers, James finally agreed to a one-year, $2 million contract with the Seattle Seahawks on August 24, 2009, missing the team's training camp. The team released running backT. J. Duckett to make room for James on the roster. However, James rushed for only 125 yards on a career-low 46 carries. He played in only seven games, and on November 3, 2009, Seattle cut him from the team.
On July 26, 2011, James announced his retirement from football.
James currently resides in Miami, Florida. He has four children, Edquisha, Edgerrin Jr., Eden James, and Euro. On April 14, 2009, Andia Wilson, James' long-time girlfriend and the mother of his four children, died from leukemia at the age of 30.
In 2000, James donated $250,000 to the University of Miami, the largest donation ever made to the university by one of its former athletes. The university responded by naming the football meeting room after him.
James appeared in the music video for Trick Daddy's songs Nann,Take It To Da House, and Shut Up. He was also the spokesman and cover athlete for the football video game ESPN NFL Primetime 2002.
Edgerrin James and former teammate Matt Leinart are co-owners of one of the largest indoor go-cart tracks in Arizona. James and Leinart are both race fans, and attended the 2007 Daytona 500 together.