Despite suffering a season-ending ACL injury last week, New England Patriots Wide Receiver Julian Edelman is confident that he will be back stronger than ever with a heartening Instagram post.

A post shared by Julian Edelman (@edelman11) on

The 31-year-old Edelman, who has spent his entire pro career with the Patriots (2009-present), suffered a complete tear of his ACL during a pre-season game against the Detroit Lions on August 25 and is not expected to return to the football field till 2018.

After starting for Kent State University, albeit as a quarterback, the 5’10 Edelman was picked by the Patriots in the seventh round of the 2009 NFL Draft.

The Redwood City native was initially used as a kick and punt returner but gradually made his mark as a wide receiver and is now generally regarded as one of the best in the position.

Edelman won the Super Bowl with the twice (XLIX, LI) and with the 2017 season barely days away, it remains to be seen whether the Patriots will be able to cope without a player who received for 342 yards last year.

The Bill Bellichick-led Patriots haven’t had the best of pre-seasons, having two of of three games and their final tune-up tie is against arch-rivals New York Giants on August 31.

The Patriots, who won Super Bowl LI in dramatic fashion, begin their title defence with a home tie against the Kansas City Chiefs on September 8.