The New England Patriots needed a win in week 17 against the Miami Dolphins to secure homefield advantage throughout the AFC playoff race. The team did just that by blowing out the Dolphins 35-14. New England started the game quick and jumped to a 20-0 lead. Miami was able to fight back, though, and came within six points of tying the game in the third quarter.
Four plays later, Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman destroyed all hopes of a comeback. He caught a short pass from quarterback Tom Brady on 3rd and 7 and took it 77 yards for his longest career touchdown. It was the exclamation point on a highly productive day for the 30-year old.
Overall, New England’s number one wideout finished with eight catches for 155 yards and said touchdown. And because of his performance in Miami, Edelman was voted the AFC’s Offensive Player of Week 17.
It is the first time in Edelman’s eight-year career that he has been voted the conference’s offensive player of the week. In fact, he becomes the first Patriots wide receiver to win this award since Randy Moss in week 11 of the 2007 season. He also becomes the sixth member of the 2016 Patriots to win an NFL honor this season, joining Tom Brady, Dont’a Hightower, LeGarrette Blount, Ryan Allen and Stephen Gostkowski.