Not long after Julian Edelman announced his retirement from football on Monday, the discussion on whether he is a Hall-of-Famer or not was turned up to another level.
Edelman’s potential Hall of Fame case has received some support, with former teammate Rob Gronkowski recently laying out a case for Edelman to end up in Canton someday.
However, a teammate of Gronkowski’s from this past season disagrees. LeSean McCoy shot down the notion of Edelman being a Hall-of-Famer in an interview with Yahoo! Sports.
“Hall of Famer? Nah, come on, man,” McCoy said.
The major reasons for Edelman to potentially make the Hall of Fame are due to his success in the playoffs. The former Patriots receiver has the second-most receiving yards in playoff history. He’s won three Super Bowls and won the Super Bowl MVP Award for his performance in Super Bowl LIII. Edelman’s also made several clutch plays when it’s mattered the most.
McCoy acknowledged Edelman’s playoff achievements, but he doesn’t think it’s fair to compare playoff success to regular-season success because only so many players and teams can make the playoffs each year.
“I think that you have 16 weeks to showcase who you are and what you can do each year,” McCoy said. “And I think the playoffs matter, but there’s a lot of guys that don’t get a chance to play in the playoffs. And I’ve played with some of them guys. I won’t discredit anything from him, because I think he’s a great player. He plays with a lot of heart, a lot of attitude, a lot of passion. So I don’t wanna knock on his parade, because he’s retiring, he’s a hell of a player. I don’t know about the Hall of Fame.”
As alluded to by McCoy, Edelman’s regular-season success isn’t parallel to his playoff success. Edelman had just three seasons in which he had over 1,000 receiving yards and never had more than seven receiving touchdowns in a season. He also was never named to a Pro Bowl or All-Pro team, something most Hall-of-Famers were named to several times during their careers.
Edelman also ranks relatively low in some key all-time stats. His 620 receptions and 6,822 receiving yards rank 75th and 156th all-time, respectively. Edelman’s 36 career receiving touchdowns are tied for the 261st most in NFL history, all of which are low as he played in an era where the passing game was more important than ever.
McCoy, who played with the Eagles, Bills, and Chiefs before winning a Super Bowl with the Buccaneers, believes he has a “good shot” at making the Hall of Fame.
“I think that I put my numbers up with any other running backs in my decade,” McCoy said. “I was the lead dog. I think I got good numbers, from touchdowns, yards, you name it. Yards per carry. All them type of things. And you add on two Super Bowls with it. So you never know. We’ll see.”
If you go by McCoy’s argument that the regular season matters more than the playoffs, he does make a good point on his Hall of Fame candidacy. McCoy rushed for the most yards (10,434) and the second-most touchdowns (69) over the 2010s, earning him a spot on the NFL’s All-Decade team. He also has made six Pro Bowls and two All-Pro teams.
McCoy might be the inverse to Edelman. Even though he won two Super Bowls, McCoy was a healthy scratch for the Chiefs’ Super Bowl LIV victory and didn’t play a snap in the Buccaneers’ Super Bowl LV win. He also has just 222 rushing yards and one rushing touchdown over seven career playoff games.
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