Julian Edelman Breaks Out With Big Performance, Refuses to Discuss Nightclub Arrest

Julian Edelman Breaks Out With Big Performance, Refuses to Discuss Nightclub ArrestFOXBORO, Mass. — It hasn't exactly been a great season for Julian Edelman, but the Patriots' newest jack of all trades had his best game during Monday's 34-3 victory against the Chiefs.

Edelman returned a punt for a touchdown, recorded a tackle on defense and lined up at wide receiver, among other things, against the Chiefs. The former Kent State quarterback transitioned to wide receiver during his rookie season in 2009, and he made his debut on defense in garbage time last week against the Jets. He played more of a significant role on defense Monday, playing in sub packages with six defensive backs.

"It's another opportunity," Edelman said. "In this league, you've got to take advantage of opportunities, and I've got to continue to try to get better every day and work hard."

Edelman, whose previous defensive experience was as a safety during his freshman year of high school, also drew a key holding penalty that negated a third-down conversion in the first quarter. On the next play, he tackled Jeremy Horne to force a Kansas City punt.

Edelman's big play came on a 72-yard punt return that gave the Patriots a 24-3 lead early in the third quarter, and the score all but sealed the victory. He shook four defenders in the initial pocket before racing up the sideline to the end zone.

Maybe just as impressive, Edelman assisted on the tackle on the ensuing kickoff, though he wasn't credited with a statistic. It was a capsule of how his role can change from play to play, and he even laughed after the game when he said he's been in "a lot" of meetings recently with his multitude of roles.

It hasn't always been this easy for Edelman. He was a healthy scratch for the only time in his three-year career last month against the Steelers. One day later, he was arrested for allegedly groping a woman during a Halloween party at a Boston nightclub.

Edelman, who spoke Monday for the first time since the incident, said twice he's "been advised not to talk about it," but noted it's been a challenging stretch for him.

"It's been pretty challenging, but all I can do is come out here, get away from everything else and focus on my job," Edelman said. "So that's what I've been doing."