Only 1.7% of college football players make it to the NFL.
That percentage is probably even lower for players at junior colleges. When New England Patriots Wide Receiver Julian Edelman was a student at the College of San Mateo, he believed he would beat the odds and play professionally.
One skeptic scoffed at Edelman’s dreams, only to apologize a decade later.
Edelman’s junior college English teacher wrote Edelman a sincere apology for responding to his dream with derision.
It probably wasn’t the first or last time someone scoffed at Julian Edelman’s chances of reaching NFL stardom, but the doubt way back when still resonates with at least one former teacher of the jocular New England Patriots wide receiver.
In a letter Edelman shared on Twitter on Tuesday morning, his former English 100 teacher from the College of San Mateo (Calif.) apologizes for a “flippant” response made to Edelman’s stated desire of “going to the league.” The teacher, whose name isn’t revealed in the post, goes on to express how “terrible” the teacher feels when reflecting back on that moment.
set your goals high. do whatever it takes to achieve them. #motivation
Following his year at San Mateo, Edelman went on to start three years as an option quarterback at Kent State. He was picked in the seventh round of the 2009 NFL draft by New England and served as a fulcrum on two Super Bowl championship campaigns.
As jucos go, it’s worth noting that the College of San Mateo is far from some “Last Chance U.” Alums include Super Bowl-winning coaches John Madden, Bill Walsh and Dick Vermeil.
Not only did Edelman make it to the league, he’s been an invaluable weapon for the Patriots as a slot receiver; last season he pulled in 98 receptions for over 1,100 yards.
He also made one of the most memorable plays in Super Bowl history.
…let’s take a moment to recognize the game’s real MVP, a jaw-dropping catch by Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman, one that blew up the internet and instantly goes down among the greatest in NFL history.
New England had the ball while down eight points in the fourth quarter — having already clawed back from deficits of 21-0 and 28-3 — when Brady made what can only be described as a bad throw. He tossed a weak ball into double coverage, committing a mistake that easily could have resulted in an Atlanta interception.
But then Edelman made a legendary play. As three Falcons defenders rushed in around him, the Pats receiver tracked the ball of a ricochet, then dove and snagged it between a defender’s legs to keep the play alive before finally gripping the ball tight and securing possession just a hair’s width above the turf.
Here’s a close-up look at the decisive moment.
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The catch kept New England’s desperate comeback hopes alive, and they ultimately won the game in overtime.
Nobody will ever forget that play, especially Edelman’s contrite English teacher.