New England Patriots receiver Julian Edelman will play no further part in his team’s season after tearing the ACL in his right knee.
Edelman was hurt during his team’s preseason win over the Detroit Lions and an MRI scan revealed the problem.
The League champions then confirmed that the player would miss the 2017 season.
Edelman went down on a non-contact play on his third catch of the opening drive and limped off the field. He was then carted to the locker room and did not return.
The 32-year-old has been Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s most reliable target for years, earning more than nine targets per game over the last four NFL seasons. He has also averaged more than 11 yards per catch over the past five years.
Edelman is also coming off a career-high 1,106 yards from last season and has signed a two year, $11million contracted with $7million guaranteed before this offseason.
While the injury may hurt the Patriots, it won’t derail the train like a sidelined Brady or even Rob Gronkowski would and the nature of play that the team’s attacking players possess should facilitate an easy transition from Edelman to a player such as Danny Amendola.
For sure, Edelman’s absence will change how the Patriots attack the campaign and opposing defensive teams, but as long as Brady is at centre, the dream of another Superbowl win should not be dismissed.