In Saturday’s big game between the Bills and Patriots, Julian Edelman was forced to leave the game to get checked out. However, it may have come as a result of his attempt to sell the referees that he wasn’t committing intentional pass interference.
Edelman’s acting job results in flag, blue tent
Julian Edelman is already rather beat up, but he still took the field for Saturday’s game against the Buffalo Bills.
According to RotoWorld, Edelman had knee and shoulder injuries entering the AFC matchup. That didn’t stop him, as it was a crucial game for the Pats in order to claim the AFC East division title.
However, a third-quarter play where he tried to give an assist to his teammate ended up backfiring on Edelman. He’d throw a block on Bills safety Jordan Poyer during a pass. After the collision, Edelman went down and stayed down on the field after. However, the referee tossed a flag right to him and Edelman quickly popped up.
— Bradley Gelber (@BradleyGelber) December 21, 2019
That bit of acting didn’t come without extra repercussions of a pass interference call and also some safety precautions. In addition to a 10-yard penalty on the Patriots, Edelman eventually had to leave the game, first to go to the blue medical tent for evaluation of a possible head injury. Later, the medical staff forced Edelman to go downstairs to the locker room.
#Patriots WR Julian Edelman is being evaluated for head injury. He headed into the locker room.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) December 21, 2019
However, he would return and contribute. That included an immediate 30-yard catch from Brady and a two-point conversion after a Patriots touchdown. For Edelman, it was business as usual. Despite being hit with a variety of injuries, he’s appeared in every Pats game this season.
Edelman admits he was trying to sell it
Postgame, reporters asked Edelman about the offensive interference play that sent him out of the game and he admitted to his acting job.
“I was trying to sell it,” Edelman said. “Maybe they didn’t see it. Then three flags were literally in my face. That sell didn’t work and it got me taken out for a quarter.”
Luckily for him, his absence and that one play didn’t cause too much harm to the Patriots’ game. However, the sell job could have put him on the shelf in the concussion protocol.
Why did Julian Edelman stay down on the play he was called for OPI?
“I was trying to sell it,” he says with a smile. pic.twitter.com/tGKGpOON2w
— Mike Reiss (@MikeReiss) December 22, 2019
New England would go on to win the game, 24-17 and also claimed the AFC East title. It’s an 11th straight division crown for the team, according to NFL.com’s report.
Julian Edelman finished with five receptions for 72 yards in the game. Tom Brady was 26-for-33 with 271 yards and a touchdown. Rex Burkhead had 77 yards receiving and added one of New England’s other touchdowns. Sony Michel led the ground game with 21 carries for 96 yards.
“Gonna be a hell of a story” – Julian Edelman, probably pic.twitter.com/iirOMz5vXl
— Tucker Boynton (@Tucker_TnL) December 22, 2019
Now the Patriots will wait for the outcome of Sunday night’s Chiefs vs. Bears game. Should the Chiefs lose or tie in that matchup, the Pats secure a first-round bye in the playoffs.
However, a Chiefs win means the Patriots need to take care of business in their final game of the season against the Miami Dolphins. That probably means no rest for Julian Edelman, but he’s proved his ability to withstand the bumps and bruises.