Patriots

Bedard: Julian Edelman sets the tone for the Patriots offense post-Tom Brady

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(Adam Richins for BSJ)

Nobody would have blamed Julian Edelman if he was up for reminiscing on Monday.

In his first meeting with the media since Tom Brady bolted for the Bucs, Edelman was asked about his BFF leaving, and I doubt even Bill Belichick would have given No. 11 grief if he said a lot of very kind words about Brady.

I mean, for the previous 10 years, Edelman basically tried to emulate Brady any way he could. At one point, they even started dressing alike. To be honest, it got a little Buffalo Bill-ish at intervals.

But when Edelman was asked his thoughts on Brady, he answer was straight Patriot Way.

"Obviously, it was a little different scenario, but you've got to move on and understand that this is a business," Edelman said. "You wish him well, and that's when you instantly start thinking about what you have to do to prepare yourself to go out and contribute and help the team for the upcoming year.

"Obviously, we played a lot of ball together and love him to death, but the train keeps moving as it will when I'm not playing here or something. It just always keeps going. We just have to worry about the people we have here and try to prepare ourselves the best we can."

This was precisely the tone that needed to be set by the, gulp, elder statesman of the Patriots' roster. Nobody would have blamed Edelman if he pined a bit for Brady, but it wouldn't have done the Patriots any good.

Time is of the essence. TB12 is playing in a stadium with a pirate ship now, and you know he's going to want to prove his Patriots doubters wrong. New England has no time to waste if it wants to continue rolling down the tracks.

"There's a lot of guys who are passionate for football," Edelman said. "Of course Tom has a passion that's a very big one, but he's moved on and he's somewhere else and we're worried about the passion of the players that are on this team right now. I can tell you right now there's a lot of guys that are very passionate and very hungry and it's going to be an opportunity to go out and play football. ... Every year there's new change on all teams."

Edelman's Belichickian response shouldn't be surprising. The former seventh-round pick as a college QB, has always feared