Edwards was born Vincent Edward Zoino III in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Julia and Vincento Zoino, a bricklayer, immigrants from Italy. He had a twin brother and was the youngest of seven children. He was a standout on his high school swim team and went on to study at Ohio State University on an athletic scholarship. There, he was part of the university's swim team that won the United States National Championships.
Zoino studied acting at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and in 1950, he was signed to a contract by Paramount Pictures, making his film debut as "Vince Edwards" in 1951's Mr. Universe then played the lead next year in Hiawatha. Although he had major or lead roles in several films, including the film noirs Murder by Contract (1958) and The Scavengers (1959), it was not until he was featured in the title character on the highly successful Ben Casey television series that he achieved a level of stardom. The medical drama show, which he occasionally directed, ran from 1961 to 1966 and, as a result of the show's and his own popularity, Edwards also released several music albums. Vince was represented by one of Hollywood's first "Super Agents," Abbey Greshler of Diamond Artists in Hollywood.
When the television series ended, Edwards returned to acting in motion pictures with a major role in the 1968 war drama, The Devil's Brigade. He continued to act in film as well as in guest spots on television plus. He directed a number of episodes in a variety of television series including the original Battlestar Galactica. some twnety-two years after the series ended, Edwards returned to television as Dr. Ben Casey in 1988. Edwards made his last film in 1995, The Fear, after the filming of which he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.