Several things stick out here:
1. Sherk threw more punches but missed far more often.
2. Even when Sherk did land he didn't land with nearly the force or impact that Edgar was able to land on him.
3. Edgar was able to use kicks to keep Sherk at a distance at times while still being able to land with some effectiveness, add diversity to his offensive arsenal and use the appropriate distance to keep Sherk from deep penetrations on takedowns should he have elected to shoot.
4. Then, of course, there is the issue of takedowns. In my mind, this is where the fight was lost, but let me explain what that means precisely. For such an adept wrestler, the numbers here really underscore just how poor Sherk's game plan was. It's not just that Sherk only attempted three takedowns (landing one successfully). It's that you'll notice Edgar attempted five and Sherk shrugged all of them off. Sherk is not only a good offensive MMA takedown artist, but his takedown defense is also quite excellent. Even if Sherk only landed a third of takedown attempts, it doesn't really matter. By being the aggressor and trying to takedown Edgar, Sherk could've accrued points with a more consistent effort. While Sherk may not have able to gather Octagon control points, aggression matters particularly in very even contests. And normally relying on takedowns can zap a gas tank very quickly, but we're talking about Sean Sherk.
Worse, a Sherk who is constantly threatening the takedown or actively seeking it is a Sherk who is crowding or smothering Frankie Edgar. With a more consistent takedown effort (feints as well as attempts), he could've far reduced Edgar's ability to get on his horse where the New Jersey native was able to damage Sherk consistently over the course of three rounds at the distance of his choosing.
MMA pundits and fans alike are sometimes critical of fighters who win without inflicting much damage through aggression and positional control, but Clay Guida has managed to actually amass a fan following while, if being at times inconsistent, putting together some quality wins and nice paydays through valiant, disciplined effort. I doubt Sherk fell on his sword for fans, but whatever prompted him to abandon his best weapon and improperly use his outstanding cardiovascular fitness needs to be addressed immediately. Edgar fought an excellent fight and one should not lose sight of that, but Sherk made it far too easy for him. What a shame.