Julian Edelman on Bill O’Brien: ‘Always happy to see a guy succeed and get opportunities’
|01.06.12 at 1:40 pm ET|
FOXBORO — The Patriots locker room was a very quiet place on Friday as players scattered quickly for their bye weekend, most declining comment on the departure of Bill O’Brien as Penn State’s head coach, once the Patriots playoff run is over.
But Julian Edelman offered some perspective. It was Edelman who – in 2009 – came aboard as a wide receiver and kick return specialist at the same time O’Brien was promoted to offensive coordinator to replace Josh McDaniels.
“I don’t know if it’s true, yet,” Edelman said. “I know just about as much as you guys do. From what I was told, coach will be here.”
Told that owner Robert Kraft confirmed the departure after the playoffs, Edelman expanded upon what he’s observed of O’Brien’s personality.
“Regardless, you’re always happy to see a guy succeed and get opportunities,” Edelman said. “Coach is a very passionate guy, knows his stuff and you know he’s going to give it his all always and I love playing for him,” Edelman said. “Football is fun, you’re going to have fun, regardless of who you play for. He’s very charismatic and very emotional. He gets fired up when you get fired up. Billy-O is just a good guy.”
“It helps you,” Edelman said of the motivation factor from O’Brien. “But if you’re worrying about a coach firing you up, you probably shouldn’t be here.”
Edelman said he has no worries about a possible distraction next week.
“We’re still getting ready for the playoffs,” he said. “We didn’t change anything. We’re going to get back to work here soon, enjoy a couple of days off and rest.”
Edelman said Penn State fans and players shouldn’t worry about his qualifications.
“He knows his stuff,” Edelman said. “You love playing for him. You want to do well for him. That’s Coach O’Brien.”
Was O’Brien back on Friday from his Thursday interview at Happy Valley?
“You’re going to have to ask Coach Belichick on that one,” Edelman answered. “When guys go different directions, that just gives opportunities for other people. We’ll see.
“I know Coach as an offensive coordinator. He’s done great for us, he’s going to keep on doing well for us and I look forward to preparing with him the next week.”
Edelman also gave some clues as to what he’ll be doing this weekend.
“Definitely going to watch the games,” Edelman said of the Bengals-Texans on Saturday and the Steelers-Broncos on Sunday. “It’s always hard to say you’re going to be a football fan because when you’re watching, you’re breaking down, you’re watching your position group or you’re watching the opposite position group so at least I’ll be doing that and eating pizza or something.”
Watching both sides of the ball?
“All three sides, all three sides the whole game,” Edelman laughed, referring to the special teams.