He said he is “honored and so proud to retire a Patriot” and “Foxboro Forever.”
Edelman’s name showed up on the NFL’s transaction list on Monday as the Patriots released him due to a failed physical. The announcement of his retirement came shortly after. Immediately, praise and respect rang out from NFL players, coaches, and more.
Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and owner Robert Kraft had nothing but glowing comments to make about Edelman. The Patriots’ official Twitter account shared statements from both men.
Free-agent cornerback and future Hall-of-Famer, Richard Sherman paid his respects to Edelman.
Pats Buzz offered the following highlight of Edelman in his Super Bowl LIII MVP performance against the Los Angeles Rams in 2018.
NFL Update broke down crucial aspects of Edelman’s storybook career.
ESPN’s Field Yates called Edelman’s career the “ultimate story in hard work and development.”
NBC Sports Boston’s Tom Curran pointed out Edelman’s maturation as a man away from the field and retweeted his open letter to Meyers Leonard, the disgraced former Miami Heat player who used an anti-Semitic term during a live stream earlier this year.
The tributes could go on for hours, but it’s clear the impact Edelman’s career had on his teammates, peers, coaches, and fans who had an opportunity to watch him play.
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Is Edelman a Hall-of-Famer? Let the debate rage on, but based on this tweet, it would appear he is at the very least on Canton’s radar.
Last but not least, Edelman’s most famous ex-teammate, Tom Brady, paid his respects to one of his favorite receivers.
Why the Patriots Released Edelman Because of a Failed Physical
The Patriots organization did right by Edelman. They terminated his contract because of a failed physical which keeps him eligible for the injury protection benefit. This move can pay Edelman an additional $2 million, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
This is the kind of gesture that will not be lost on Edelman or other players in the league. In this situation, not many will find fault in the Patriot Way.
How Does Edelman’s Retirement Impacts the Patriots’ Salary Cap Situation
The Patriots will get a bit of a break financially from Edelman’s exit, and that additional cap space could help facilitate a trade or perhaps another free-agent signing.
According to Patriots cap expert Miguel Bezan, the retirement will free up just over $2.5 million for New England. That takes their cap space up just over $15.2 million.
Edelman’s presence will be missed, but in the end, the Patriots could wind up winning from the additional money made available. Expect to see the Patriots draft at least one receiver later this month with the ability to replace Edelman.