Julian Edelman

AFC East Notes: Patriots, Edelman, Jets, Bills

Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman won’t be prosecuted in connection with his January incident (via TMZ). One week after the Patriots were eliminated from the playoffs, Los Angeles police alleged that he jumped on the hood of someone else’s Mercedes and caused damage. His drunken escapade won’t result in legal consequences because the owner of the car doesn’t want him to be prosecuted and Edelman does not have a “known criminal history,” per the DA’s office. With that, it’s unlikely that the Super Bowl LIII MVP will face league suspension.

Last year, Edelman tallied 100 receptions for 1,117 yards and six touchdowns. Even as he enters his age-34 season, he remains a key player in the Patriots’ offense. Now, the Pats have to figure out who will be throwing to him in 2020.

Here’s more from the AFC East:

  • The Patriots still hold Rob Gronkowski‘s rights, which means that he wouldn’t be able to simply come out of retirement and rejoin Tom Brady in Tampa (if that’s what he wants to do). However, he could easily force the Patriots’ hand, as Mike Florio of PFT notes. Gronk could un-retire, put his $9MM salary back on the books, and push the cap-strapped Pats to trade or release him. In that scenario, Florio speculates that the Patriots could swing a trade for one of the Bucs’ talented tight ends – Cameron Brate or O.J. Howard.
  • Despite the chatter, Ralph Vacchiano of SNY doesn’t think the Jets will trade Jamal Adams. He reasons that if the Jets wanted to trade the Pro Bowl safety, they would have done it already – the Cowboys reportedly offered a first-round pick for him, but they countered by asking for a whole lot more. That sky-high asking price, he says, is a pretty good indication that they want to keep Adams for the long-haul. Despite all of the drama, Adams is one of the game’s premier young defenders and the Jets seem to think that an extension is possible.
  • With that said, Vacchiano doesn’t think the Jets are in any rush to extend Adams. The 24-year-old (25 in October) can be kept through 2021 through his fifth-year option. After that, they can realistically use the franchise tag twice over to keep him through 2023.
  • The Bills are believed to have running back on their draft to-do list, but they also see rising sophomore Devin Singletary as a potential workhorse back. “I think Devin can do either or. He’s an unselfish player,” GM Brandon Beane said (via PFT). “If we want him to be the workload guy, I think he could definitely do it. I think Year Two is going to be better for him.” Singletary averaged over 5.0 yards per tote last year and could have had a chance at 1,000+ yards if he hadn’t missed time with a hamstring injury.

Patriots Rumors: Brady, Edelman, Gilmore

We heard earlier this week that the Patriots made “no tangible effort” to retain Tom Brady, which drove Brady to leave Foxborough. Mike Reiss of ESPN.com paints a slightly different picture with respect to Brady’s departure, saying that Brady himself believed he had squeezed everything he could out of his relationship with head coach Bill Belichick (who may have felt similarly). Had Belichick approached Brady and suggested that the two sides do what they could to make sure the six-time Super Bowl champ finished his career with the Pats, Brady may have been receptive, but that is not Belichick’s style, and Brady never really expected that to happen.

The Patriots’ usual impersonal approach to their business, which has served them quite well over the past two decades, also played a role. The Pats generally withhold offers from players they are interested in retaining but who are allowed to test the market. That way, they avoid bidding against themselves and insulting the player, but by keeping an open dialogue, they are able to pounce if the price is right. In Brady’s case, no negotiations took place since August, and player and team may have been waiting for each other to make the first move.

Now for more from Foxborough:

  • So where do the Patriots go from here? Although New England is among the league leaders in dead cap charges for 2020 ($23MM), Reiss believes the club is in line for a reboot, not a rebuild. The Pats have a much rosier financial outlook in 2021, when they are projected to have roughly $100MM of cap space, so Reiss suggests they will look to get younger and clean up their cap situation this year so they can take full advantage of their flexibility next season.
  • Ben Volin of the Boston Globe is more pessimistic about the Pats’ immediate prospects (though he does say that the salary cap ramifications stemming from a theoretical Brady re-up made it more logical for the team to part ways). He believes the club is in for a difficult rebuild, and while there do not appear to be any concrete trade rumblings, he suggests that New England could look into dealing WR Julian Edelman and CB Stephon Gilmore.
  • Indeed, Gilmore — the reigning Defensive Player of the Year — could be seeking a raise after seeing less accomplished CBs get PAID this offseason, and dealing him would certainly yield a nice return of draft capital. It depends, presumably, on whether the Patriots feel they can retool on the fly or need to tear down.
  • Despite being connected to Bengals’ QB Andy Dalton in offseason rumors, the Patriots have not discussed Dalton, per Jeff Howe of The Athletic (via Twitter). We heard several days ago that New England would instead seek a cheaper veteran, and Howe suggests former Patriot Brian Hoyer could be in play (Twitter link). Hoyer, who was released by the Colts yesterday, is reportedly open to a reunion with the Pats.

Patriots WR Julian Edelman Arrested

Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman was arrested on Saturday night after allegedly jumping on the hood of someone else’s Mercedes, per TMZ Sports. Edelman was cited for misdemeanor vandalism and released.

Edelman was reportedly walking around Beverly Hills with friends around 9pm when he leaped onto the vehicle for some unknown reason. Officers were in the area working on a robbery case when a bystander flagged them down and alerted them of the incident.

TMZ’s law enforcement sources say that Edelman was drinking, which is hardly surprising. And given the nature of the transgression, the LA County district attorney may not file charges, especially if Edelman pays the vehicle owner for damages.

Edelman was also arrested in 2011 for allegedly groping a woman at a bar, but those charges were later dropped after video evidence proved inconclusive. Given that, the current allegations probably will not lead to an NFL suspension.

As one of the few reliable weapons in the Patriots’ passing game this year, Edelman hauled in 100 catches for 1,117 yards and six scores. The 33-year-old is under contract through 2021.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Extra Points: Newton, Barkley, Edelman

The Panthers’ season got off to a disastrous start, as the team limped out to an 0-2 record and Cam Newton re-injured himself. It looked like they were quickly circling the drain, and then Kyle Allen happened. Allen was nearly perfect starting in place of Newton, averaging ten yards per attempt and tossing four touchdowns while leading Carolina to a road win over Arizona. Allen’s performance was so strong, that it sparked some talk of a potential quarterback controversy.

Speaking after the game Panthers head coach Ron Rivera said the starting job is still Newton’s when he’s healthy but that right now they’re “rolling” with Allen, per Joseph Person of The Athletic (Twitter link). Newton won’t be getting benched, but Rivera’s comments don’t exactly inspire confidence that he’ll be back soon. Newton aggravated a foot injury he suffered during the preseason, and his throwing shoulder which he underwent surgery on this offseason hasn’t looked 100 percent either. It’ll be very interesting too see what happens next, but with Allen’s emergence it appears Carolina’s quarterback situation isn’t as dire as it originally seemed.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • We’ve heard that Giants running back Saquon Barkley has suffered a high ankle sprain and is going to miss some time, and now we have Barkley’s thoughts on his injury. “I’m not out for the season,” Barkley said, via Matt Lombardo of NJ.com. “I’m going to do whatever I can to get back as quickly as possible.” Barkley told Jordan Ranaan of ESPN.com that he had a high ankle sprain his freshman year at Penn State, and that he only missed two games with that injury (Twitter link). Right now two missed games would probably be a best-case scenario.
  • Patriots receiver Julian Edelman was knocked out of New England’s win over the Jets with a rib injury, but fortunately it doesn’t seem too serious. X-Rays on his ribs were negative, sources told Ian Rapoport of NFL Network (Twitter link). Rapoport writes that it’s an “early positive sign,” which would seem to suggest he isn’t completely out of the woods yet. In the wake of Antonio Brown‘s release, the Patriots’ receiving corp would suddenly go from loaded to a bit thin if Edelman has to miss any time.
  • In case you missed it, Redskins tight end Jordan Reed‘s career is in doubt.

Patriots Notes: Edelman, Hoyer, Punter

Over the past 10 years, there have only been two occasions where the Patriots have carried three quarterbacks. With Tom Brady and rookie fourth-rounder Jarrett Stidham being locks to make the team, Brian Hoyer understandably finds himself on the roster bubble.

“You can’t really worry about that. My approach is to just be the best I can be, and I think that will be good enough,” Hoyer told ESPN’s Mike Reiss. “It’s not something I’m really concerned with. If anything, I’m trying to push the guy ahead of me, and I love being in that room with him. We have such a healthy competition on a daily basis, and I know that’s made me that much better since I’ve come back.”

After spending the first three years of his career with the Patriots, Hoyer returned to New England following the Jimmy Garoppolo trade in 2017. Reiss notes that the 33-year-old has been “very sharp” over the past few weeks, which could end up validating his spot on the roster.

Let’s check out some more notes out of New England…

  • Patriots wideout Julian Edelman has passed his physical and been removed from the non-football injury list, reports ESPN’s Field Yates (via Twitter). The veteran suffered a thumb injury in late-July that ultimately sidelined him for about three weeks. It’s been a busy few days for the Pats’ wide receiver corps. Embattled wideout Josh Gordon was reinstated from suspension on Friday, and he was subsequently placed on the team’s active/NFI list. To make room on the roster, the organization moved on from Dontrelle Inman.
  • The Patriots are set to release veteran punter Ryan Allen, but it sounds like they might not be ready to hand over the keys to rookie Jake Bailey. Ryan Dunleavy of NJ.com tweets that the Patriots made a claim for punter Johnny Townsend, who was waived by the Raiders last week. The Giants ended up claiming the 2018 fifth-rounder.
  • While the Patriots tight end depth chart is still a question mark, Nick Underhill of The Athletic writes that the team’s offense is trending upwards. Last week, the team was running out the likes of Braxton Berrios and Gunner Olszewski with their first-team offense. Several days later, the team’s depth chart has been revamped. It goes beyond the return of Edelman and Gordon, as the team has potentially found some worthy targets in undrafted wideout Jakobi Meyers and third-round running back Damien Harris. Add that pair to Phillip Dorsett and first-rounder N’Keal Harry (as well as running backs James White, Sony Michel, and Rex Burkhead), and there’s plenty of reason for optimism in New England.

Patriots Work Out Justin Hunter

The Patriots worked out four wide receivers on Monday, according to Field Yates of ESPN.com (on Twitter). Free agents Nick Williams (Titans), Justin Hunter (Steelers), Papi White (Jaguars), and Travin Dural (Saints) all showed their stuff for the Pats, who will be without Julian Edelman for the next three weeks because of a thumb injury. 

Hunter seemed to hold serious promise when he entered the league as a second round pick of the Titans in 2013. Since then, he has spent time with three other teams, with the Steelers being the most recent of the bunch. He has managed just 14 catches with the Bills, Dolphins, and Steelers between 2017 and 2018. Last year, he did not see the field. His best season came most productive season came in 2014 when he had 28 catches for 498 yards and three scores with the Titans, though he did manage four TDs with Buffalo in 2016.

Hunter and the other players won’t have the easiest path towards making the Patriots’ final cut, but one of them may have an outside opportunity to hook on with the defending champs.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Extra Points: Edelman, AAF, XFL

We haven’t heard a whole lot about the defunct Alliance of American Football since the league suspended operations back in April. However, according to Daniel Kaplan of The Athletic, former league owner Tom Dundon has filed “as an unsecured creditor” for the AAF and is claiming he was convinced to buy the league via “misrepresentations.” Dundon is seeking the entirety of the $70MM he invested in the company.

The league initial secured financing from Reggie Fowler, who is currently under indictment for bank fraud. That’s when Dundon, who owns the Carolina Hurricanes, entered into the equation, as he helped make up for Fowler’s failed commitment by purchasing the league. At the time, the perception inside the league office is that Dundon simply purchased a majority stake in the company to obtain the technology behind its gambling app.

However, a lawyer told Kaplan that Dundon may have two new objectives. For starters, he was looking to “remove himself from any litigation from creditors.” Second, by opting for the “misrepresentation” charge, the league’s executive/board insurance policies could come into play, which would then “open a new pool of money.”

Let’s check out some more notes from around the football world…

  • Dundon will have a difficult time convincing the courts that he’s not responsible for the AAF’s $48MM in liabilities, reports Roy Cummings of Florida Football Insiders. Specially, when Dundon “assumed all of the operational costs,” this meant he was responsible for making payroll. Furthermore, his public declarations that he would continue to invest money (around $250MM) into the league indicates that he was both prepared and capable to pay for any debts. Finally, considering Dundon’s standing as the Hurricanes owner, he has millions of dollars coming in each year that could be used to pay off creditors.
  • Former NFL safety Rahim Moore auditioned for the XFL last week, according to Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk.com. The 2011 second-rounder bounced around the NFL during his professional career, and he started 41 games for the Broncos between 2012 and 2014. The 29-year-old recently participated in the AAF, and he understands that an opportunity in the XFL would also come with its fair share of risks. “It’s still football, you know?” Moore said. “There’s a risk in everything you do. But if you love something, man, just go do it.”
  • Super Bowl MVP Julian Edelman is currently on a promotional tour for an upcoming documentary, and the Patriots wide receiver discussed what he went through during his four-game suspension to start last season. “It was a low time,” Edelman said (via Florio). “You’re already battling mentally if you can do it like you did it. And then all of a sudden you have this, you’re dealing with this, and then you’re dealing with everyone outside of your life and what people are saying and dealing with and you can’t really get too involved into because you’re ultimately trying to get yourself back to playing football. It’s not like you’re 100 percent going out here and dealing with all these things, and you’re fine. You still have a task at hand, and that was one of the biggest parts of my journey back — one of the toughest times where I really had to compartmentalize with how to deal with my injury, my suspension, with being a balanced family member and getting back from my injury. And that was a very tough time. . . . It was honestly — it was probably the toughest time of my life at that point.”

Contract Details: Patriots, Edelman, Collins

A look at the details on recent deals from around the NFL:

  • Julian Edelman, WR (Patriots): Two-year extension. Worth $18.5MM, could increase to $25.5MM with incentives. $9.3MM tied to roster bonuses/performance incentives, $1.1MM in workout bonuses. Cap hits: $6.077MM (2019), $7.166MM (2020), $6.66MM (2021). Details via the Boston Globe’s Ben Volin (Twitter) and The Athletic’s Nick Underhill (Twitter).
  • Jamie Collins, LB (Patriots): One year (original story). $250K guarantee, $100K signing bonus, $900K base salary. $1.25MM injury guarantee. Earnings: $2MM (plays in all 16 games), $3MM (part-time starter), $5MM (starts all 16 games). $3MM cap hit. Details via Volin and via Underhill.
  • Brandon King, LB (Patriots): Two-year extension, $3.5MM. When combined with current deal, contract is three years, $4.875MM. 2019 salary increases from $1.175MM to $1.975MM, 2019 cap number increases from $1.359MM to $1.626MM. Details via Volin.

Patriots, Julian Edelman Agree To Extension

Julian Edelman has agreed to a two-year extension with the Patriots, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter). The new pact will potentially take the wide receiver through the end of his career and allow him to retire in New England. It also comes with a pay bump – Edelman will receive $18MM in new money over the course of the two-year add on, giving him $21MM throughout his remaining three years, according to Tom Curran of NBC Sports Boston.

The deal comes with $8MM signing bonus and $12MM guaranteed, Mike Reiss of ESPN.com (on Twitter) hears. All in all, Edelman will earn an average annual value of $7MM, which is a solid bargain for the Patriots. Even when calculating his extension via the “new money” average, Edelman’s $9MM puts him outside of the league’s top 20 highest-paid receivers.

Edelman, who turns 33 on Wednesday, had another productive season in 2018. After missing the first four games of the season due to a ban for PEDs, the veteran amassed 74 catches for 850 yards and six touchdowns. Had he produced at the same rate over the course of a full 16-game season, Edelman would have registered something close to a 93/1063/8 stat line, which is not far off from his best single season performances.

Edelman has spent his entire career with the Patriots since entering the league as a seventh-round pick (No. 232 overall) in 2009. He was quietly productive in his rookie season, but he truly broke out in 2013 with 105 grabs for 1,056 yards and six TDs. Over the years, Edelman has captured three Super Bowl rings with New England, including February’s 13-3 win over the Rams in which he took SB MVP honors.

Edelman’s career seemed to be in doubt just a couple of years ago – the wide receiver lost the entire 2017 season to a torn ACL and had to sit out the first month of the ’18 season due to his suspension. However, he came back strong and he now has a deal that should allow him to retire with the only NFL franchise he’s ever known.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Patriots Activate Edelman, Cut Barner

New England will venture into its Week 4 game thin at running back, though the Patriots’ wide receiver situation will be in as good of shape as it’s been all year.

Julian Edelman‘s return Thursday night forced the Patriots to make a roster move, and they’re opting to release running back Kenjon Barner, Mike Reiss of ESPN.com tweets. Barner’s bounced on and off the Pats’ roster this season, but his latest departure leaves them thin in the backfield.

With Rex Burkhead and Jeremy Hill on IR, the Patriots will go into their Week 5 Colts matchup with just James White and Sony Michel healthy. That’s a thin contingent of able backs, but both played well last week. Barring injury, the Patriots should be able to navigate this situation. However, either White or Michel going down would bring about some problems.

Barner saw action against the Dolphins, taking three handoffs for 11 yards. He has not, however, worked as a kick or punt returner this season. Those have been his primary responsibilities as an NFLer. That said, the Patriots will surely make a running back transaction in the near future — possibly bringing Barner back again — to round out their roster.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.