BOSTON (CBS) – An MRI has confirmed Saturday what the Patriots already feared. Wide receiver Julian Edelman suffered a torn ACL against the Lions.
Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick said in a conference call that the season is going to be more difficult without Edelman.
“Well, yeah, we feel badly for Julian and hope that he will have a speedy and complete recovery. But yeah, the team will have to move on and we’ll have to compete in this season without him. It’s unfortunate but that’s the way it is, so we’ll have to figure that out,” Belichick said.
Belichick adds that Edelman is a scrappy player.
“Yeah, Julian is a great competitor, works hard, is tough, does all of the things that you ask him to do. I feel badly for him, of course,” the Patriots coach said.
He adds that being able to “move on” is difficult.
“Well there’s a personal side. I mean, you never move on. Julian will be here on a regular basis doing his rehabilitation and so forth. So this team has to move forward with the resources that we have,” Belichick said. “Unfortunately we’ve lost one, an important one. As a team we have to move forward. That’s what we’ll do.”
Reports of the severity of the injury came in early Saturday. Albert Breer of The MMQB first reported the news Saturday.
The Patriots confirmed the story Saturday afternoon.
Edelman went down after suffering the injury on a non-contact play, after he planted his right leg in the turf.
Several reports indicated after the game that the Patriots initial tests indicated a torn ACL was likely. But Saturday’s MRI has reportedly confirmed those fears.
Breer’s report came around the same time that Tom Brady and Danny Amendola took to social media to express support for Edelman.
Without Edelman this season, Brady and the Patriots will turn to Brandin Cooks, Chris Hogan and others to fill the void.
New England finishes the preseason against the Giants on Thursday and opens up the regular season a week later as the Patriots host the Kansas City Chiefs at Gillette Stadium.