Running back James White celebrated his 29th birthday on Wednesday and longtime teammate Julian Edelman shared a special birthday wish over Instagram.
“This guy is everything you’re looking for in a teammate. Lucky to call you my brother. Happy birthday 2-8”, Edelman wrote in a caption alongside a photo of the two from a game last season.
Whites 2020 season proved to be a challenging one after losing his father in a tragic car accident, but he credited his teammates for helping him through the remainder of the year.
“My teammates are there for me every step of the way,’’ said White in September. “The atmosphere in this locker room, from texts to phone calls to tweets, old teammates, everybody reaching out, meant a lot. It was an extremely tough week. I’m still trying to process everything, but hearing from them and them being there definitely helped.”
Julian Edelman has been one of those teammates for seven seasons now, and their close relationship was on full display in the weeks that following his father’s passing.
“We were [playing for White],” said Edelman. “One of our brothers is hurt ,and it puts a lot of things in perspective. With James White being the man he is — an outstanding guy on the field, in the locker room, off the field — to go through what he’s gone through over the last week, our thoughts and prayers have been with him. It did give us motivation to go out there and play for him because you know for a fact with the kind of guy James White is that if something like that happened to one of us he would do the same thing.”
After returning to the Patriots following a two week absence, White played in all 12 remaining games and finished the season with the second most receptions on the team at 49. White also logged 375 receiving yards, the third most on the team and added one receiving touchdown and two rushing scores.
As for his playing future, White will become a free agent for the first time in his career following the Super Bowl when the new league year begins.
“I’m still very young. Still have a lot of good football left in me,” White told Mark Daniels of the Providence Journal in January.
“I didn’t play my first couple of years so it kind of knocked two years off of my career shelf life. I still have plenty of good football left in me. Wherever my future takes me, I’m excited about it and I’m excited about being more productive next season.”
Presently, the Patriots have four running backs under contract heading into the 2021 season with Damien Harris, Sony Michel, Brandon Bolden and J.J. Taylor all on the depth chart.
“Honestly, I don’t know what the future holds,” White went on to say. “I’ve never been through free agency before so this is my first time so I’m not even sure what to expect. I’m not ruling anything out. For right now just be relaxed for a couple of weeks, get back to training, get my body back feeling right and see what happens. I’ve never been through this process before, so I’m excited to see what it’s all about.”
Posted Under: Patriots Photos
Tags: Brandon Bolden Damien Harris J.J. Taylor James White Julian Edelman Sony Michel