Patriots

Bill Belichick’s decision to release Cam Newton didn’t faze Julian Edelman

“I feel bad for [Newton] with that whole situation." Edelman said. “But it’s not a very surprising act by the Patriots.”

Julian Edelman and Cam Newton played together on the Patriots for several years before Edelman left the team after an injury. Photo by Billie Weiss / Getty Images

Patriots head coach Bill Belichick’s decision to let go of veteran quarterback Cam Newton was a shock for most people in the world of football, except for former Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman.

Edelman, who was with the Patriots for 12 seasons, recalled some of Belichick’s decisions in previous seasons in a conference call Wednesday for Showtime’s “Inside the NFL,” and said that he was not particularly surprised with the decision that Belichick made. 

“Nothing surprises me with Bill. Just look at the history,” Edelman said. “Logan Mankins was let go. Lawyer Milloy, [Richard] Seymour. I think the kid came out and did very well. You could see in his eyes, see in his reads, that he felt very comfortable in the pocket.  He was looking at the right areas. He ran the no-huddle well.”

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In place of Newton, rookie Mac Jones will be the starting quarterback for the Patriots this season. Belichick has not revealed why he chose Jones over Newton but Edelman did not think it was because Jones out-performed Newton.

“I don’t think he beat [Newton] out, but the ceiling is so high and after spending the 15th overall pick on him, they’re going to go with him,” Edelman said. “It didn’t surprise me.”

Although Belichick spoke positively of Newton’s improvement during training camp, misunderstanding of COVID protocols led to Newton missing out on several practices, including a joint practice against the Giants last week. 

Despite his nonchalant reaction to Newton being cut, Edelman said he still felt bad for him.

“I feel bad for [Newton] with that whole situation. I don’t think they wanted a distraction and wanted to give him a chance to go out and get on another team,” Edelman said. “But it’s not a very surprising act by the Patriots.”

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