Tom Brady: Julian Edelman 'Scared' to Tell Bill Belichick He Wanted to Join BucsApril 30, 2021
Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady joked former New England Patriots teammate Julian Edelman retired because he was "too scared" to tell Pats head coach Bill Belichick he wanted to join the Bucs.
Brady discussed the wide receiver's recent retirement during an appearance Thursday on the NFL's Draft-A-Thon live stream:
Edelman sidestepped a question from comedian Kevin Hart about whether he was planning an eventual NFL comeback, per Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk.
"It's always great to have someone in shorter than you," Edelman said of Hart.
The 34-year-old three-time Super Bowl champion announced his retirement April 12, saying it was the "right decision for me and my family":
While it seemed like a genuine statement about the intention to hang up his cleats for good, it's hard not to think about Rob Gronkowski. The star tight end retired as a member of the Patriots in March 2019 only to resurface and work out a trade to the Buccaneers last April.
Gronkowski went on to play a major role in the Bucs' Super Bowl triumph over the Kansas City Chiefs in February, catching two touchdowns to help Brady secure his seventh championship.
Tampa Bay is already overloaded with pass-catching weapons for 2021—Gronkowski, Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Antonio Brown, Scotty Miller, O.J. Howard and Cameron Brate—so there isn't an immediate need or fit for Edelman heading into next season.
Godwin, Brown, Gronkowski and Howard are all potential free agents next season, however, so it wouldn't be a surprise to see Edelman return from a Gronk-style one-year hiatus to join the Bucs in 2022.