10 things you probably didn't know about Julian Edelman, the MVP of Super Bowl LIII and Tom Brad
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1. He played quarterback for Kent State in college
Julian Edelman spent three years under center for the Kent State Golden Flashes. In that span, he threw for 4,997 yards and rushed for another 2,483, leading the team in both categories during his senior season.
2. He wasn't invited to the NFL
Even though he didn't get an invite to the NFL Combine following his senior season, Edelman left a strong impression with scouts and analysts when he beat every time clocked at the combine with a 3.91-second 2 0-yard shuttle. The New England Patriots took a gamble and selected him with the 232nd overall pick in the final round of the 2009 NFL Draft.
3. He's only 5-foot-10
Both the Golden Flashes and the Patriots listed Edelman at 6 feet tall, but Edelman has told reporters that he's actually 5-foot-10. After a year in New England, the team changed his official mark to reflect his true height. He's since poked fun at himself with opposing teams.
4. Even though he's primarily a wide receiver, he occasionally plays defense for the Patriots
Edelman was drafted for his versatility, and that gamble has paid off for the Patriots. Although he's predominantly a wide receiver, Edelman is also a stellar punt and kick returner. He also has played defense in 115 games over the course of his NFL career.
5. He made one of the greatest catches in Super Bowl history
Nearing the end of the third quarter in Super Bowl LI, the Atlanta Hawks held a commanding 28-3 lead over the Patriots, but Tom Brady and the New England offense refused to go down without a fight. The Patriots erupted for 17 consecutive points and got the ball back with 3:30 left on the clock and a chance to tie the game. Brady led the charge down the field, and, with just over two minutes left, one of his passes was batted into the air. Edelman dove through a sea of Falcons defenders and caught the ball just inches off the ground for the first down. New England would tie the game to finish the drive and win it in overtime.
6. He has a bunch of pretty great nicknames
Edelman has picked up a number of interesting nicknames throughout his NFL career. Tom Brady dubbed him "Minitron" while Darrelle Revis went with "Energizer Bunny," but Edelman's favorite moniker is "Squirrel" because he once yelled from the sideline "don't let me get squirrelly out there."
7. He wrote two children's books
Edelman's first children's book, "Flying High," is about a squirrel named Jules overcomes his physical limitations with hard work, discipline, and a bit of help from a goat named Tom. The sequel, "Flying High 2," was based on Edelman's legendary catch from Super Bowl LI against the Atlanta Falcons. It came out in December 2017.
8. He is Jewish
Edelman is one of just a handful of current NFL players who identify as Jewish. He wore an Israeli-American flag pin on his hat during a 2014 game against the Denver Broncos and showed his support for the victims of the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting in November 2018.
9. He once conducted the Boston Pops Orchestra
Really. In front of an audience. Check out the hilarious video.
10. Before Super Bowl LIII, Edelman got a tour of Atlanta from a stranger who didn't recognize him
"Literally, I was walking down, and there's a dude, Nate, he came up," Edelman told Boston.com. "We saw each other at the gas station, and he just started walking with me and telling me everything about the area. It was like having a cool little guide... He's a good dude. It was kind of like a little friendship that just grew."