By Staff

BOSTON (CBS) — If there was any remaining hope that Julian Edelman might return from injury for one last hurrah on Sunday in the Patriots’ season finale, it was officially extinguished on Friday morning by Bill Belichick.

The Patriots head coach told reporters that Edelman will not be healthy enough to return for Sunday’s game against the Jets, and thus, his season is over.

“Yeah, he’s not going to play this year,” Belichick said of Edelman.

Considering Edelman — who’s been out since late October with a knee injury — returned to the practice field in recent weeks but hasn’t been practicing lately, Belichick was asked if the receiver suffered a setback.

“I wouldn’t say that, no,” Belichick answered. “I would just say he’s not … he wasn’t ready to play, and won’t be ready to play.”

Despite Edelman being absent on Sundays for the majority of the season, Belichick said that Edelman has been a big help with teammates during the year.

“He was around regularly, and I thought he did a good job of using his experience to help other guys in areas that he was familiar with and could give them the benefit of his experience and some guidance,” Belichick said. “Yeah, definitely.

Edelman is under contract for 2021, but that’s no guarantee that he’ll be back for his 13th year with the Patriots organization. Belichick didn’t really offer much in terms of future speculation and roster building on Friday.

“Yeah, I think it’s way too early to start talking about next year.”

Edelman played six games this season, catching 21 passes for 315 yards. The bulk of that production came in Week 2 in Seattle, when Edelman set a single-game career high with 179 receiving yards in a 35-30 loss to the Seahawks. Edelman also was 2-for-2 passing for 38 yards, and he had two rushes for 22 yards. Staff