During an appearance on Jason Kelce’s and Travis Kelce’s podcast “New Heights,” Patriots legend Julian Edelman took some time to talk about his former coach, both adding to the auro of Belichick and dispelling some myths about the grumpy, yet successful head coach.
It takes a special kind of player to get on Belichick’s good side and Edelman was one of them. A former seventh-round pick, Edelman takes listeners back to his 2009 rookie season when he remembers just not making eye contact with the Patriots coach out of pour fear.
Julian Edelman recalls his fear of Bill Belichick
"“There’s a principle, you just kind of stay away, don’t make eye contact, (Belichick) might ask you a question,” Edelman said during the podcast. “I was so terrified of that dude.”"
That didn’t stop Edelman from being quizzed by the head coach. The former quarterback converted to wide receiver recalled being asked about who wore No. 72 in a picture on the wall. The Kent State product didn’t know it was his current teammate, offensive lineman Matt Light.
Belichick threw expletives at Edelman who then made sure he went and got to know all the players on the roster back then. Despite winning three Super Bowls together and becoming one of the most clutch receivers in the NFL, Edelman still has that fear of the future Hall-of-Fame head coach and perhaps that is what made him one of the most successful NFL players to play under Belichick.
"“(Explicit) Belichick,” Edelman said after Jason Kelce responded that most rookies today are given books to learn players names and numbers. “I’m still scared of him.”"
Edelman had to do his own research and will probably never forget any player who wore No. 72 during his tenure in New England, but again, his versatility and doing everything the coach asked him to do is why Edelman is Edelman. Despite giving credence to the persona of Bill Belichick, the former Patriots receiver is typically a guy who comes to the defense of his old coach.
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But to keep this lighthearted, Julian Edelman also revealed Belichick’s dry sense of humor, which he displays sometimes on the podium or even in interviews. The players, Edelman said, never new when to laugh at a Bill Belichick joke.
"“He’s got a dry sense of humor,” Edelman said. “A lot of guys don’t know if they can laugh at his jokes. But he does say a lot of funny (things). He’s funny and he’s fun when it’s okay to be fun.”"
In coaching one of the longest dynasties in NFL history, Bill Belichick has done it his way for over two decades and the fact that he has a retired player still “scared” of him is a testament of the impact he holds over players…the ones who succeed anyway.