Patriots Legend Says Tom Brady Tried to Recruit Him to Tampa Bay

Getty Tom Brady

When Tom Brady decided to leave the New England Patriots in 2020 to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in free agency, it appears it was all a part of a masterplan.

Brady convinced Rob Gronkowski to come out of retirement. He also convinced the Bucs to give wide receiver Antonio Brown a look as well. It seems Brady had even bigger plans.

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According to former Patriots great Julian Edelman, his longtime friend tried to recruit him as well. Edelman told Peyton and Eli Manning this during his appearance on the alternative broadcast of Monday Night Football:

“(Tom) hit me up the first day he signed there, like, ‘You wanna come down?’ I was like, ‘Absolutely not.'”

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If hardcore Patriots fans didn’t already love Edelman, they should now. Edelman wasn’t a free agent at the time, but he probably could have made a stink if he’d wanted to, and there is a chance Bill Belichick might have granted him his wish and traded him to Tampa Bay.

Rather than succumbing to the temptation of chasing another Super Bowl ring alongside his good friends Brady and Gronkowski, Edelman couldn’t imagine himself playing for another organization.

Edelman, who retired this offseason, played all 11 of his seasons in the NFL with the Patriots. According to Edelman, the closest he ever came to leaving Foxboro came in 2013 when he was a free agent and took a visit to see the New York Giants.

Even then, Edelman chose to stay in New England.

Is Edelman a Hall-of-Famer?

Most Patriots fans likely answer this question with a resounding, yes. However, Edelman’s fitness for the Hall-of-Fame won’t be determined by New England faithful.

From a pure numbers and honors perspective, Edelman doesn’t seem to measure up. While he has won three Super Bowl rings, Edelman was never elected to a Pro Bowl or All-Pro team. He has just 620 receptions for 6,822 receiving yards and 36 TDs.

In his career, Edelman eclipsed 100 receptions just twice and 1,000 yards three times. For the first four years of his career he was primary an punt returner before becoming a full-time WR in 2013.

Edelman had a fine career, but it’s not one worthy of landing him in Canton, Ohio.

Are We Going to See a Belichick-Brady Super Bowl?

The Week 4 matchup between the Buccaneers and the Patriots was huge. Brady and Tampa Bay came out on top in a close game.

At that time, it appeared the Bucs were the only ones that looked like a Super Bowl contender. Fast forward to Week 13 and the Patriots are now the hottest team in the NFL while the Bucs are still among the NFC’s elite.

A rematch in the Super Bowl has never looked more realistic. However, we will need to see what the Patriots do with the Buffalo Bills in Week 13 before we can officially call them the AFC’s elite. Stay tuned.

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Edward Friedmann
Edward Friedmann
9 months ago

Well I will not be retiring my Edelman jerseys good for you Julian stay true to the team that you love here I New England. What do you have going on please comeback as a coach or sports color man for CBSBoston.

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