By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com
Despite the credit that the Patriots built up by bagging a sixth Lombardi Trophy, it wouldn’t be a New England offseason without a few elephants in the room.
Bill Belichick’s year-to-year morphing of the Patriots roster always results in at least a handful of questions. They usually feel crucial to the operation. And they’re usually vaporized by late January because the Patriots are right back in the AFC Championship Game.
But if there was any offseason move that felt more appropriate and necessary than the rest, it was to take care of Julian Edelman financially. After his monster performance in Super Bowl LIII, he deserved it.
Edelman will be in a Patriots uniform for the next three seasons now that he’s reportedly finalizing a two-year extension. Reports indicate that it will keep Edelman in New England for the rest of his career, so there wasn’t a ton of time left to give Edelman a raise.
He’s certainly getting that. After just a $2 million base salary in 2019, Edelman’s new contract adds up to $19 million, according to ESPN’s Mike Reiss. He gets $12 million guaranteed, $8 million of it as a signing bonus.
This means the move is not likely to affect the salary cap much in either direction – Edelman was already on the cap for $5.4 million in 2019. This was about keeping Tom Brady’s most trusted target in the fold and making him the clear lead dog on paper.
Rookie N’Keal Harry, whom the Patriots drafted 32nd overall last month, got a $5,364,252 signing bonus as part of his rookie deal. He’s also due a $495,000 salary. So now the rookie can get in line behind Edelman when they collect their checks.
Beyond those two, the wide receiver position remains a giant bag of question marks that has to be sifted through before the start of the 2019 season. But off the field, it was important to add certainty to Edelman’s situation. Now there’s no question where Edelman stands for the rest of his career in a Patriots uniform.
Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.