It was rather fitting that Julian Edelman earned MVP honors Sunday as the New England Patriots defeated the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.

The Patriots wide receiver’s grizzly beard and reputation as a tough, hard-nosed competitor who delivers in the clutch is emblematic of New England’s sixth title. This season wasn’t always pretty for the Patriots, but Bill Belichick’s bunch still stood atop the mountain when the dust settled.

Colin Cowherd explained Monday on FS1 why he believes Edelman — a former quarterback and seventh-round draft pick in 2009 — defines the core of the Patriots’ dynasty. He also compared Edelman to Golden State Warriors superstar Stephen Curry for how they handle their business.

Edelman has been with the Patriots for nine seasons. He wasn’t always a star, having spent his first few years as a role player who even saw time on defense. But he since has evolved into one of Tom Brady’s most trusted targets and a reliable contributor New England can count on amid its highs and lows.

As Cowherd put it, Edelman is “family” when it comes to the Patriots’ roster construction.

Thumbnail photo via Dale Zanine/USA TODAY Sports Images