Patriots gridiron news: Julian Edelman primed for strong comeback season

DETROIT, MI - AUGUST 25: Julian Edelman
DETROIT, MI - AUGUST 25: Julian Edelman /

New England Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman is back and looks stronger than ever during Organized Team Activities this week.

Let’s forget the Tom Brady drama for a second.  One of the bright spots for the New England Patriots entering phase three of Organized Team Activities is the return of wide receiver Julian Edelman.

After suffering a season-ending ACL injury, No. 11 is back and has looked good during some of the drills.

While it is hard to mention Edelman without thinking about his favorite quarterback and buddy, the Patriots do have some positive things going on entering training camp.

Julian Edelman will be one of them.  Take a look below at how strong and quick he looks:

Now 32 years old, the Patriots No. 1 receiver will have a lot of weight on his shoulders entering the 2018 season.  Yes, the team did good without him and made it within a strip sack of winning Super Bowl LII, but there were obvious times during the season that the team truly missed him.

Danny Amendola helped fill some of that void, but with him taking his talents to South Beach, Edelman needs to be as close to the player he was in 2016 as possible.

He certainly looks to be progressing well.  As usual, however, the team is taking it day to day.  When asked about Julian Edelman’s progression, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick said the following:

"“Our expectations are day to day,” Belichick said.  “Like I said, every day is an opportunity individually and as a team to improve and get better and take another step towards the start of the season and that’s what we’re all doing.  All of us are in different states, different parts of that process, but wherever we are, we’re all gaining on it.”More from Chowder and Champions3 Midseason Chaim Bloom Decisions That Have Killed the 2023 Red Sox10 Patriots Who Will Be Cut by Tuesday’s Roster DeadlineMLB Screws Red Sox Fans With Broadcast for Mookie Betts Return3 Most Underpaid Celtics Heading Into the 2023 SeasonRed Sox Continue Rollercoaster Season With Massive Win"

Edelman, who has posted updates via social media on his progression, certainly looks good.  Heading into a season sure to be filled with tension, the comeback story of Julian Edelman could be the motivation the New England Patriots need to come back together as that team fans have grown to love.

Jordan Matthews happy to return to the field 

Another player looking to come back strong during the 2018 season is newcomer Jordan Matthews.

The 25-year-old receiver, who was signed to a one-year deal this offseason, is coming off a down year with the Buffalo Bills.  Appearing in just 10 games, Matthews caught just 25 passes for 282 yards.

It was far from the production that made him a productive slot receiver while with the Philadelphia Eagles.

For that reason, the Matthews signing hasn’t garnered much excitement, but if he catches on and becomes the productive player he was in Philadelphia, this could be one of those sneaky good additions the Patriots have become known for.

While there will be a lot of competition entering camp, Jordan Matthews is happy to be back on the field and is certainly not taking his time with the New England Patriots for granted.

"“It’s good, man,” Mathews said of being on the field for OTAs.  “I think you sometimes take for granted getting up and being able to move until you get in a situation where you are hurt, where you have a little bit of pain.  So being able to move around, be healthy and come out here and compete, I don’t take that stuff for granted anymore.  I’m thankful every day I get to come out here and play with these guys.  It was a long road back, but it’s been fun so far.”"

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The real fun for Jordan Matthews will come when Tom Brady shows up on the field.  The chemistry or lack thereof he forms with the future Hall-of-Fame quarterback will go a long way in determining his success with the Patriots.