Julian Edelman has been known to say: "Tough times don't last. Tough people do." This mantra defines his mentality in football and in life, whether he is talking about himself or others.
Yes, Edelman is as tough as they come. He will barrel through defenders, making catches that defy the odds – and sometimes gravity. He has persevered after injury only to come through in the clutch.
Rumor has it, he even eats nails for breakfast. Without any milk.
After leaving the game with an injury in the third quarter of Sunday's win over the Bills, Edelman emerged from the locker room in the fourth, ready to go and make a difference in the game. And he did exactly that.
With a 30-yard pick up that put the Patriots in Bills territory, Edelman's catch changed the momentum on the game-winning drive. A Brady-Edelman connection sealed the deal on a 2-point conversion, and after the game, Brady said it was quintessential Julian.
"Made a big play like he always does," Brady said.
Brady wasn't the only Patriot to heap praise upon No. 11. This is what they had to say.
"Julian's a tough guy … He's one of our top competitors. He always has been. He was a great competitor his rookie year, and that's transcended through his entire career – so, whether it's been offense, defense, at times we played him on defense, special teams, blocking. I thought he set the tone a little bit in the game early with a couple of big blocks in the running game. So, I thought our receivers competed hard and blocked well. But, yeah, that's Julian's playing style and it's what makes him a good player.
"He is just a spark plug, and he is open like 95 percent of the time."
"It has been great just taking notes from him, kind of learning under him and seeing the approach he takes to the game. It rubs off on everyone."
Sony Michel"He's one of our leaders. He keeps things going and he's a high energy guy, so it's always good having him in."
"Anytime Julian's on the field, it's a different ball game. He's a great receiver. Anytime he's in the huddle, he's a dangerous guy. We love having him out there."
Stephon Gilmore, per The Providence Journal’s Mark Daniels "I'm glad he's my teammate. I hated playing against him. I'm happy I'm on his team now."