After three years as the quarterback for the Kent State University Golden Flashes, Julian Edelman knew he had to change positions if he was ever going to make an NFL roster.
Prior to the 2009 NFL Draft, Edelman worked tirelessly to be prepared to convert to a third-down back, a wide receiver, or a safety, whatever the NFL viewed him as. Still, it seemed likely his football dreams would either lead him to a different league, like the CFL, or have to be put to rest entirely.
That’s when Edelman received a phone call from the New England Patriots during the seventh and final round of the 2009 NFL Draft. After being told the Patriots would be calling his name, Bill Belichick got on the phone and muttered the first words he ever said to the future Super Bowl MVP.
“Hey well, uh, you’re a hell of a football player,” Edelman told NBC’s Peter King about his draft-day phone call with Belichick. “We don’t know what you’re gonna play but we’ll see you at rookie camp.”
Ten years later, Edelman has had a wildly successful NFL career. The 5-foot-10 receiver has become Tom Brady’s favorite postseason target, compiling massive numbers during the last three postseasons in which he’s been healthy enough to play. During the Patriots’ last 12 playoff games Edelman has played, New England is 10-2, and the 32-year-old has caught 100 passes for 1,253 yards, including 10 catches for 141 yards and MVP honors in the Patriots’ Super Bowl LIII win over the Los Angeles Rams.
Belichick had gotten word that Edelman was a football player worth taking a look at. Ten years after being taken with the 232nd pick in the draft, Edelman has become one of the most storied Patriots of all time and just might have himself immortalized in Canton, Ohio, when his career is over.
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