The 2020 NFL season has been all about transition for the New England Patriots.

Tom Brady's decision to leave the Pats and sign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers officially ended one of the most successful eras in NFL history. It also marked a significant organizational shift as New England prepares for the future.

There could be more transitioning in 2021.

Veteran Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman will not play in the team's final game on Sunday, with head coach Bill Belichick saying the 34-year-old is simply not ready following knee surgery in late October.

Belichick clarified Edelman did not necessarily suffer a setback, but will not suit up in Week 17:

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“I wouldn’t say that, no. I would just say he wasn’t ready to play and won’t be ready to play,” Belichick said, via Ryan Hannable of WEEI.

But the more telling bit came shortly thereafter. When asked whether Edelman would return to New England in 2021, Belichick said it was “too early” to discuss the matter, per Hannable.

Belichick has never been one to show his hand in terms of future roster moves. However, there is reason to believe Edelman will not be with the Pats next season.

Edelman played just six games this year before suffering the aforementioned knee injury. He had just 21 receptions for 315 yards, failing to get in the end zone.

The former seventh-round pick will be 35 in May, and his contract has an out after this year. Considering Edelman carries a dead cap hit of around just $2.67 million (total cap hit of $6.67 million), the Patriots could cut ties.