Shortly after Edelman announced his retirement from the NFL, Belichick released a heartfelt message describing how it was a privilege to coach the three-time Super Bowl champion. He then doubled down on his stance by praising Edelman’s work ethic during a media session on Thursday.
“Julian’s been one of the players that’s probably come further than most every other player that I’ve coached,” Belichick said. “His development from a quarterback in college to a receiver, punt returner and even a defensive player, all positions that he never played. To excel as a punt return and receiver for a number of years at those difficult positions is quite an accomplishment, especially considering that he didn’t do those things, wasn’t trained to do them, in college. His toughness, his competitiveness, his playmaking ability was a big part of the backbone of our team.”
Edelman returned the favor this Friday afternoon, posting a classy message on Instagram for Belichick’s 69th birthday.
“All I needed was an opportunity,” Edelman wrote on Instagram. “Thanks for everything coach. Happy Birthday BB.”
It’s somewhat surreal thinking about what Edelman accomplished with the New England Patriots. No one thought a quarterback from Kent State would have so much success as a wide receiver.
While most of the credit rightfully goes to Edelman, we have to tip our cap to Belichick for spotting that untapped potential in him.