These days, with just a few weeks until draft weekend, it's lying season. There's all kinds of information on prospects floating around the ether.
Some of it is good. Some of it... not so much.
As it turns out, the information the Patriots had on Julian Edelman when he was leaving Kent State for the NFL falls into the category of the former.
Following Edelman's retirement announcement Monday night Jim Nagy, now the executive director of the Senior Bowl, tweeted some of the insight he'd gleaned about Edelman many years ago. Nagy, a former Patriots scout, was the one tasked with doing digging on Kent State and its potential pro prospects back in 2008, including an athletic quarterback who may have to pick up a new position at the pro level.
Strong work ethic? Instinctive? Athleticism to play offense or defense? Certifiable competitor? Sounds like someone with whom Bill Belichick would like to work.
Edelman checked a lot of boxes for the Patriots, even way back then. And those don't even get into the specifics of just how athletic he was. He ran a 6.6-second three-cone drill and a sub 4.0-second short shuttle. Those are elite figures that few draft prospects have the ability to clock. According to Mockdraftable.com those numbers were in the 95th and 97th percentile, respectively, among prospects over the last 20 years.
The Patriots are open with colleges about what they want in their players around this time every year. It's spelled out pretty clearly: big, strong, fast, smart, tough, disciplined. Save for "big," they got just about everything they were looking for in their seventh-round pick back in 2009.