Ex-Patriots Star on Bill Belichick's Exit: 'Lack of Production Was Inevitable'

Edelman Reflects on NFL Changes and Coaching Transitions

by Nouman Rasool
Ex-Patriots Star on Bill Belichick's Exit: 'Lack of Production Was Inevitable'
© Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

For the first time in nearly half a century, the NFL season will commence without Bill Belichick on any team’s payroll, marking a significant end to an era that has defined modern football. Belichick, whose NFL career began in 1975 as a special assistant for the Baltimore Colts, has been a staple on the sidelines, most notably leading the New England Patriots through 24 groundbreaking seasons.

Under Belichick’s leadership, the Patriots became a dynasty, missing the playoffs only three times in his first 20 seasons. However, recent years have seen a decline, with the team failing to reach the postseason in three of the last four seasons.

This downturn led to a mutual decision for Belichick and the Patriots to part ways after the regular season concluded.

Edelman Unfazed by Exit

Julian Edelman, a key player in three of New England's Super Bowl victories and participant in five, shared his insights on the seismic shift within the team.

Speaking to Fox News Digital, Edelman expressed his lack of surprise over Belichick's departure. "This is the National Football League. You’re not surprised seeing anything. Even Vince Lombardi got fired... It’s a ‘what have you done for me lately’ kind of world," Edelman remarked, pointing to the relentless demand for results in professional sports.

Edelman noted the absence of loyalty and the necessity for fresh starts even among successful teams. "Am I surprised? No. It’s a production business. This is what happens, and we weren’t getting any production," he added, underscoring the performance-based nature of the league.

The reality of Belichick's absence is something Edelman anticipates will truly sink in when he sees Jerod Mayo, the new head coach, leading the Patriots from the sidelines. Edelman mused on the upcoming changes, particularly in team aesthetics, expressing excitement about Mayo's choice of gameday attire, hinting at a likely departure from Belichick's iconic cut-off hoodie.

Despite his extensive experience and a storied career, Belichick faced challenges this offseason. He engaged in interviews with teams like the Atlanta Falcons and the Los Angeles Chargers but did not secure a coaching position.

Patriots Bill Belichick