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Julian Edelman relives local ties to Jerry Rice ahead of 49ers matchup

Julian Edelman Jerry Rice 49ers

The New England Patriots are slated to have a difficult Week 7 matchup against the San Francisco 49ers. Aside from being a crucial game, the road trip will be especially memorable for Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman who grew up in the Bay Area and was once a neighbor to Niners legend Jerry Rice.

“Growing up in Redwood City, they had Edgewood Park, and there was Jerry Rice Hill. It was a folklore,” Edelman said. “It was known that Jerry Rice used to go out and run that hill and everyone knew about his work ethic — him going out and catching bricks, outworking people and never taking time off and really taking his craft seriously.”

The two have known each other dating back to Julian Edelman’s high school days. The Redwood City native also ran the famed Jerry Rice hill during his collegiate years at Kent State University.

Rice also served as a huge inspiration for Edelman who desired to carve his own path in the NFL growing up. Now a tenured veteran on his own, the Patriots wideout ranks second behind the 13-time Pro Bowler in terms of career postseason receptions and receiving yards.

On the field, the 34-year-old hasn’t seen much success this season. With a different offense catered to a new quarterback in Cam Newton at the helm, he still hopes to find ways to contribute for his team’s scoring attack in any way possible.

With a 2-3 record in the AFC East division, Edelman aims to give his team a much-needed win to tie their division rival Miami Dolphins, who are currently on their bye week and own a 3-3 record.