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Julian Edelman outlines NFL profession, fight against antisemitism in talk at SU

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Three-time Super Bowl Champion Julian Edelman tore his ACL in the beginning of the 2017 NFL season. After going through rehab, he returned for the 2018 season. But just before the season began, he was hit with one other setback, a four-game suspension.

“I used to be at a really low moment in my life,” Edelman said.

But Edelman said he battled through his obstacles, ending the season with the Super Bowl LIII MVP. Overcoming adversity was one in every of the topics Edelman discussed when he visited Syracuse University on Wednesday to talk over with students at Goldstein Auditorium through an event placed on by Falk College, the Whitman School and Syracuse Hillel.

“The yr began terribly and to have the ability to fight my way out of that and help contribute to that team was a really proud moment for me and my self-worth,” Edelman said. “To exit and win Super Bowl MVP and the Super Bowl was something that I’m very pleased with.”

Edelman tallied 6,822 yards and 36 touchdowns through 11 seasons within the NFL. But in Wednesday’s discussion he transitioned into his post-football endeavors, where he focuses on fighting antisemitism and advocating for the Jewish community.

Playing within the NFL gave Edelman the platform that he now uses to advocate for his passions, which has only grown with the event of social media.

Edelman’s roots in Judaism stemmed from his relationship together with his father and grandfather. During his NFL profession, Edelman read the stories of the Old Testament and met weekly with a rabbi, which progressed his understanding and appreciation for the Jewish faith. He now uses his 1.5 million followers on Twitter and three million on Instagram to advocate for the Jewish community.

“(The stories of Judaism) were so parallel to my life, my profession, at all times being the underdog, I connected with it,” Edelman said.

While Edelman said he knows the natural instinct is to place a “fist out” when there’s hatred, he knows he can do higher. “Pro-semitism”, as Edelman called it, involves Jewish people showing others what they will do well and spreading it to other communities.

“I don’t worry concerning the hate, I worry about what I can do to encourage people and worry concerning the good things you may and that our community does,” Edelman said.

In Wednesday’s discussion, Edelman always brought up the challenge of getting difficult conversations about insensitive comments in today’s world. Those conversations are vital to maneuver forward and educate others, he said.

“All of us have to have more uncomfortable conversations, that’s where it starts,” Edelman said. “Once you learn (about) people you realize we’re all quite a bit more similar than you’re thinking that.”


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