The New England Patriots may have to manage receiver Julian Edelman’s workload in 2021 if they want him to finish the season. In fact, it sounds like Edelman, with a chronic knee injury, will have a hard time playing in every game, per the Boston Herald’s Karen Guregian.
Edelman missed 10 games on injured reserve with a knee injury, and limped his way through a number of the games he did play. It was clear his health wasn’t 100% on the injury report, where he was listed as limited for every practice that he participated in. It’s not like he can’t play: he finished the Patriots’ Week 3 loss to the Seattle Seahawks with with eight catches for 179 yards. But it’s also clear that performance was an exception.
“According to a source familiar with Edelman’s situation, it’s doubtful he will be able to play the entire 2021 season. The knee has already hampered him for the better part of two years.”
The Patriots have depth at the slot position in their offense, with New England signing receiver Nelson Agholor during free agency to join Jakobi Meyers and Gunner Olszewski. Even Kendrick Bourne, another free agency signing, and N’Keal Harry can play in the slot, even if they project more naturally to outside positions in the offense. And the two tight end signings, Jonnu Smith and Hunter Henry, can probably do some work from the slot, too.
It’s a versatile and, perhaps, deep offense. New England could keep Edelman in the mix in a very limited capacity, if the receiver decides he wants to play in 2021.