Julian Edelman just makes it look easy.
The veteran receiver had another big outing Sunday against the Bills, finishing the afternoon with 11 catches for 97 yards along with two touchdowns during the Patriots 40-32 win against their AFC East Rival.
Fourteen of those points came on the back of Edelman, who was challenged all afternoon by a Bills defense that double-teamed him and still couldn’t keep him from breaking free and allowing Tom Brady to hit him on a perfect strike for a touchdown.
It was a dominant performance and he was certainly tested. Buffalo came out on their opening drive and marched down the field, scoring an early touchdown to start the game and firing up a Buffalo crowd that was hoping to set a Guinness Book Of Records for sound against the Patriots on Sunday.
When the Patriots took over, Brady hit Edelman for a short gain where he got drilled and then missed him on a deep pass on third down which led to a punt. It wasn’t exactly the way they likely wanted to start the game and as the crowd became louder, Edelman and the Patriots were forced to increase their focus and go out and execute.
“You’re more focused on what you have to do for that next drive, what the coaches saw the previous drive, what you have to do to improve and what you have to do to go out and execute on the next drive,” said Edelman after the game via WEEI. “Sometimes you feel it. It was loud but we practice those type of situations all the time and I feel like our coaches keep us prepared for those type of things.”
On their next drive Brady hit Rob Gronkowski up the seam on a perfectly thrown pass that picked up 36-yards and two plays later he connected with Edelman on a 7-yard pass which got them down to Buffalo’s 8-yard line. After the play was over, Edelman got up and was pushed hard after the whistle by defensive back Aaron Williams, who gave the Patriots receiver a big two-handed shove right in front of the official. You could see Edelman say something to the referee about Williams’ shove that sent him reeling, but he was dismissed and no call was made.
So Edelman went ahead and handled it exactly as any player could have hoped. He scored a touchdown on the next play, breaking away from two defenders and after the catch he signaled to the crowd to quiet down before spiking the football so high it landed in the seats.
His stat line mirrored exactly what he did last week against Pittsburgh after also catching 11 passes for 97 yards, only this time he made a couple of visits to the end zone, which are exactly the type of performances that the Patriots will need from him. After what we’ve seen through the first two weeks, New England will likely be faced with some tough battles until their defense eventually settles in and starts playing a little more consistently.
Edelman’s already been worked hard over the first two games, finishing with back-to-back games with at least 10 catches for the first time in his career. However, it wasn’t all perfect after he also had a couple of drops and he knows he’s still got some work to do to continue getting better.
“You’ve got to always try and improve,” Edelman said. “Those are great things and all but I’m more thinking about [mistakes] so, it’s going to be a good week to go out there, get back to the fundamentals. There’s a whole bunch of plays I could’ve done better on so there’s a lot of things we have to do better. But it was definitely good to come in here and get a win.”
— New England Patriots (@Patriots) September 20, 2015
Posted Under: Patriots Commentary
Tags: 2015 NFL Season Buffalo Bills Julian Edelman New England Patriots