If the Patriots are going to make a late playoff push, they're going to have to do it without Julian Edelman for a little while longer.
According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, Edelman is "still a couple of weeks" away from returning to action. The 34-year-old hasn't played since Week 7 and has been trying to work his way back after undergoing a knee procedure in late October.
The good news for New England? Schefter also says that Edelman "fully intends" to play again this season. A healthy Edelman could do wonders for the Patriots' pedestrian passing game, with Cam Newton unable to do much through the air lately.
Edelman got off to a strong start this season, with 13 receptions for 236 yards over the first two weeks -- including a career-high 179 yards in Week 2 against Seattle -- but his production tailed off in the following weeks, with only 79 receiving yards over his next four games before going on the shelf.
“I know he’s working extremely hard and I would certainly never count Julian out of anything," Bill Belichick recently said when asked if he expected Edelman to return this season. "He’s got a tremendous will and work ethic and very competitive. Football is very important to him, so it would take a lot for me to count him out, put it that way.”
The knee isn't the only thing that has delayed Edelman's return. He was also placed on the Patriots' reserve/COVID-19 list last week.