Patriots Get Julian Edelman Back Into the Fold

Ian Logue
April 10, 2013 at 06:23pm ET

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It's been a tough offseason from the standpoint of the Patriots losing wide receiver Wes Welker, but they're starting to make some moves to try and bring some stability heading into the upcoming NFL Draft as well as OTA's and minicamps next month.

Getting Julian Edelman back in the fold is certainly a strong move by the Patriots. (FILE:USPresswire)

On Wednesday the NFL Networks' Jason LaCanfora reported that the Patriots are set to re-sign Julian Edelman, bringing back a guy who's been an extremely productive punt returner as well as a guy who will provide them with some additional depth at the receiver position.

Edelman last season was obviously more productive in the return game, but he was still a solid contributor in the passing game prior to his injury.  He finished the season with 21 receptions for 235 yards and 3 touchdowns, including 12 first downs.  He also had eight third down receptions, seven of which were first downs as well as two touchdowns.

The recent acquisition of Danny Amendola provides them with a dynamic receiver out of the slot while Edelman allows them additional flexibility and depth behind the former Rams receiver. Michael Jenkins and Donald Jones give them two additional threats, with the latter having shown a lot of potential with the Bills in Buffalo.

However, another interesting move Wednesday centered on the fact New England signed Pittsburgh's Emmanuel Sanders to an offer sheet, and should Pittsburgh be unable to to match it, the Patriots suddenly have a pretty good group coming together as we start inching closer to football ramping back up here in New England.

We'll see how things play out with Sanders but the move to bring back Edelman was a good one.  He knows the system and is a guy who has been versatile on both sides of the ball.

The deal is reportedly for one-year and according to Ian Rapoport it's incentive-laden, which certainly plays into the Patriots favor.  Hopefully he'll be able to remain healthy and Patriots fans will get to see plenty of production from the former Kent State quarterback.

Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald reports that Edelman will be at Gillette Stadium next week when the Patriots begin their offseason program.