What a difference a couple of years make.
Going into the 2020 season, Julian Edelman is now 34 years old and with Tom Brady's departure to Tampa Bay, the longest tenured member of the Patriots offense.
How does that make him feel?
“It’s definitely crazy," he said via video conference Monday. "I can remember like it was yesterday when I was a rookie. Now, time flies when you’re having fun. I have had a lot of fun here and hopefully this fun continues and that is what we’re looking forward to, just playing some football and continuing that. Wise old vet now, I guess.”
Edelman is one of the toughest player the league has to offer and he takes a number of big hits each time he takes the field given his role as a slot receiver. He dealt with a number of injuries last season, which impacted his play down the stretch of the season.
The 34-year-old was asked about his health as he prepares for his 11th NFL season, but he didn't exactly answer the question -- for a specific reason.
“Last year, it’s football," he said. "Everybody gets banged up, everyone is dealing with something. This year, in the offseason you tried the whole time to get your body feeling the best you can and you get ready to get your body ready for football. That’s where we’re at right now. It’s been a crazy offseason with quarantining and not having a familiar routine that you’re accustomed to going into an offseason so there’s been a lot of adjusting. The body is feeling better and better each day. That is what you strive for and improvement and we’ll continue to do that with conditioning and all those different types of things that we do.
"I don’t know if I answered that question, but health questions are very scary to me, in this organization.”
Despite the injuries last season, Edelman finished with 100 catches and a career-high 1,117 receiving yards.