Patriots Wide Receiver Julian Edelman Announces Retirement: 'It's a Helluva Run'
Julian Edelman is hanging up his football cleats.
The New England Patriots wide receiver announced his retirement with a video message shared on Twitter Monday.
The video began with a 360-degree shot of Edelman sitting in the middle of the field at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts, as audio of his career highlights played in the background.
"Nothing in my career has ever come easy, and no surprise: this isn't going to be easy, either," the Kent State alum said. "Now, I've always said, I'm going to go until the wheels come off. And they've finally fallen off."
Edelman's announcement came hours after ESPN reported that his contract had been terminated following a failed physical exam. Last season, the 34-year-old athlete only played in six games thanks to a knee injury.
"Due to an injury last year, I'll be making my official announcement of my retirement from football," Edelman continued in his message. "It was a hard decision, but the right decision for me and my family."
Edelman, who has played for New England for 12 years, added that he is "honored" and "proud" to be concluding his playing career as a Patriot.
The longtime player — who was the first Jewish NFL player to be named a Super Bowl MVP — went on to thank several people, including Patriots owner Robert Kraft, coach Bill Belichick, his teammates and other Patriots organization staff members.
He also thanked his former coaches and family before saying that "It's been the best 12 years of my life. It's a helluva run. I can't forget you, Patriot Nation. You guys have welcomed me and my family to a region we do not know, we didn't know. But now, I'm one of you. I'm a leave you guys with two words: Foxborough Forever."
The video concluded with a card that read, "It's been a helluva story. Thanks for everything," along with Edelman's signature before the player was shown back on the field walking toward the tunnel.
Edelman then stood and looked around for a moment before saying "beam me up," and disappearing off the screen.
Both Kraft and Belichick issued statements Monday, calling Edelman one of the franchise's greatest successes.
"Julian Edelman is the ultimate competitor, and it was a privilege to coach him," Belichick said.