Patriots

Julian Edelman's father details what led Patriots WR to retire

Patriots

You'll find plenty of people (Rob Gronkowski included) who are convinced Julian Edelman isn't done playing NFL football.

But if you believe a father knows his son best, then the former New England Patriots wide receiver is retired for good.

Edelman's father, Frank Edelman, joined our Tom E. Curran on a special edition of the Patriots Talk Podcast to discuss a wide range of topics, including why his son decided to step away from the Patriots in April.

As Frank tells it, the writing had actually been on the wall since 2019 when a knee injury forced Edelman to starting missing practice.

Patriots Talk Podcast: Mac Jones: “There’s a lot going on in my brain” Plus, Frank Edelman! | Listen & Subscribe | Watch on YouTube

"Once they start getting hurt and they're playing hurt ... Jules is a total practice guy. This is what we did," Frank told Curran. "He's an Edelman, and that's kind of what we did when we were playing Pop Warner and high school: We worked hard at practice. Just full-on.

"And once he couldn't practice because of that knee -- it just wasn't going away. Jules likes to practice, and that's where he gets confidence. So, once the practice became once a week or not at all (or only) on walkthroughs, we knew we were kind of getting into trouble."

 

Edelman exacerbated his knee injury in 2020 and cut his season short after just six games to undergo minor knee surgery in October. He was just one season removed from catching 100 passes for 1,117 yards in 2019, though, so many hoped he'd return in 2021 for a 12th NFL season.

But as Frank explained, Julian's limitations in practice were a serious limitation that prevented the highly competitive wide receiver from playing the game he wanted to.

All lobbying from Gronkowski and Tom Brady aside, Edelman does seem at peace with his decision to hang them up -- and his father shares that sentiment.

"I was happy that it was over," Frank Edelman told Curran. "It was enough. He's been hit a lot. He caught a lot of balls in the middle of the field."

Frank also weighed in on why he'll always trust Bill Belichick, when he knew for certain that Brady was the GOAT and more. Subscribe to the Patriots Talk Podcast or watch on YouTube below.