The Buccaneers have become a hotbed for former Patriots offensive players. After signing a contract with Tom Brady during the 2020 offseason, another future Hall of Fame patriot joined him when Rob Gronkowski came out of retirement to compete for a Super Bowl title. Antonio Brown, who had a short two-week stint with the Patriots in 19, signed midway through Season 20 at Brady’s request and became a key contributor to the team’s title race.
Due to those relationships and the Buccaneers’ reported interest in running back James White during the 21 offseason, there has been speculation that the Bucs may be targeting the recently retired Julian Edelman this offseason. Edelman, 34, quit after 11 years that all came with the Patriots, but some wondered if Edelman would be ready to fight for another title as a member of the Bucs. After all, Gronk did, so why not Edelman?
Brady recently helped fuel this fire when he made a joke about Edelman coming to the Buccaneers in the 2021 NFL Draft-A-Thon.
“We know Julian hasn’t retired. Let’s be honest,” Brady said. “He’s just too scared to tell [Patriots head coach] Bill [Belichick] he wants to come to Tampa. I was here.”
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As juicy as that scenario may be – another Patriots legend leaving the team for one last time with a few old buddies – it isn’t going to happen. Edelman himself confirmed this in a tweet to Pat McAfee.
Edelman has continually used the hashtag “Foxboro Forever”, so it’s hardly a surprise. Also, one of the main reasons he decided to retire was because he suffered from chronic knee pain and apparently wouldn’t be able to play a full season.
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Maybe Edelman could come back if his knee condition improves, but he’s 34 so it’s hard to imagine. Even if he played again, it might not necessarily be with the Bucs. He could give her another chance with the Patriots in hopes of bringing another Super Bowl to Foxboro.
But the odds are, Edelman’s career is over and it’s been accomplished for the former Kent State quarterback.