- James Walker, ESPN Staff Writer
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Here are thoughts on New England losing Edelman for the season:
This is tough luck for Edelman. He was starting to play his best football of the season. Edelman split time as the third receiver this year and was a terror on special teams. He had 21 receptions, three touchdowns and also a 68-yard punt return for a touchdown.
New England re-signed speedy receiver Donte' Stallworth to add depth to the receiving corps. Stallworth is familiar with the system and should have a quick learning curve. Other receivers like Brandon Lloyd and Wes Welker must take a lion's share of the load.
Edelman's injury also puts an interesting twist on free agency. Welker is approaching another 100-catch season and is looking to cash in big in free agency with a multi-year contract. Edelman is considered the heir to Welker and a much cheaper alternative. But with Edelman coming off a season-ending injury, would the Patriots change their thinking and pay Welker the big bucks?