Edelman preps for dual role in Super Bowl

INDIANAPOLIS -- Think your week is busy? Imagine being New England's Julian Edelman, preparing to play as a wide receiver, defensive back, and returner in Super Bowl XLVI on Sunday.

Just months ago, Edelman was a little-used player with a dwindling role on offense. He began to learn the other side of the ball, and is now among the bigger storylines of this game.

On Wednesday, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick expressed confidence in Edelman's ability to prepare for Sunday's game.

"Julian will be ready to go on everything as he always is. Based on game plan, and how it goes, we’ll see how that all turns out," Belichick said. "He will be ready for all three phases.”

On the Ravens' final drive in the AFC Championship Game, Edelman was on the field with the defense, lined up against Baltimore receiver Anquan Boldin.

"We got into some injury situations, and his skill set as a slot receiver carried over to the same skill set that we look for in our slot corners, so we started to use him some there in 1-on-1 after practice," Belichick said on Wednesday. "He has a knack for it, he picked it up quickly."

At Tuesday's Super Bowl XLVI Media Day, Giants wide receiver Mario Manningham was encouraged by the prospect of Edelman playing in the Patriots secondary.

"He plays wide receiver. He’s not a real defensive back," Manningham said. "Did he get drafted as a defensive back? We have a little bond going on knowing that we can beat somebody. We’re confident. I hope he’s out there."

Edelman wasn't willing to respond to Manningham's comments.

"I am not really worried about what Mario Manningham is saying right now. I am more focused on doing my job, and that is preparing right now," Edelman said on Tuesday. "We will see if that opportunity comes ahead of us in the game."