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Patriots officially give Wes Welker their franchise tag

Wes Welker AP

Tom Curran of Comcast SportsNet New England confirms that the Patriots have placed the franchise tag on receiver Wes Welker ahead of Monday’s 4 p.m. deadline.

The Patriots had contract talks with Welker throughout last season and up until March 5, but they have yet to produce a long-term deal. Welker will receive a guaranteed salary of roughly $9.4 million should he play the 2012 season under the one-year franchise tender.

Welker joins DeSean Jackson as the only two wide receivers to be franchise tagged so far, although Dwayne Bowe is likely to be slapped with the mechanism before Monday’s deadline.

Bills wideout Stevie Johnson signed a long-term deal. Aside from Bowe, the top remaining free agent receivers include Vincent Jackson, Brandon Lloyd, Marques Colston, Reggie Wayne, Robert Meachem, and Mario Manningham.

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31 Responses to “Patriots officially give Wes Welker their franchise tag”
  1. neupower says: Mar 5, 2012 3:13 PM

    Good…The Pats need to keep this guy and sign any other guy that drops passes in big games.

  2. flapjackdaddy says: Mar 5, 2012 3:14 PM

    They would probably save three million this season if they signed him to an extension. I guess they risk more that way in the long-term, though.

    He’s great, but he is not a $9.4M kind of guy, imho.

  3. ottomanismydog says: Mar 5, 2012 3:15 PM

    Now they can bring in Brandon Lloyd or Vincent Jackson, cut Chad Johnson and leave Mike Wallace alone.

  4. jimyritz says: Mar 5, 2012 3:15 PM

    $9 mil + is nothing to sneeze at but once again Pats can’t seem to come to terms ahead of time w/one of their key players…This should have been done already….

  5. CKL says: Mar 5, 2012 3:17 PM

    Not a surprise but I hope they get it worked out. I read in another story he was offered 2 yrs with a guaranteed 16 mill & turned it down so obviously that’s not going to get it done.

  6. AlanSaysYo says: Mar 5, 2012 3:18 PM

    This is the same guy that Miami traded for draft picks that turned into Samson Satele and Abraham Wright. Stay classy, Randy Mueller.

  7. peezwizz says: Mar 5, 2012 3:20 PM

    now make some real noise with some FA signings

  8. rc33 says: Mar 5, 2012 3:24 PM

    The dollar value assigned to the franchise tender ought to be based on the height of the athlete.

    Sincerely,
    Bob Kraft

  9. wryly1 says: Mar 5, 2012 3:25 PM

    Probably means they won’t be going after one of the few big name free-agent WR’s.

  10. whatnojets says: Mar 5, 2012 3:26 PM

    Exactly WHO slapped him with that tag?

    Were the local police informed or is this another Sandusky type cover up???

  11. mvpolamalu says: Mar 5, 2012 3:27 PM

    Why isnt mike wallace mentioned in the top remaining free agent wide recievers?

  12. purplecrowe says: Mar 5, 2012 3:30 PM

    Dont know how the Pats will ever be able to foot the bill for that contract…

  13. patcheatiots says: Mar 5, 2012 3:31 PM

    Awwww ButterFingers Gets Big Coin.
    Gotta Love the 2 yd Catches …
    It works on most… Not the Jets Ravens and Steelers though… They Shut him Down

  14. ampats says: Mar 5, 2012 3:34 PM

    Expected move as Wes was going nowhere. He turned down a 2 year deal and will eventually agree on a guaranteed long term deal. Looks like Lloyd makes the most sense as it could be very expensive to sign Wallace and Welker long term with Gronk & Hernandez deals coming up in the next two years if they don’t extend them first.

    Could see the Pats taking another WR in the draft.

  15. tommyf15 says: Mar 5, 2012 3:34 PM

    For the life of me, I can’t understand why Welker wouldn’t be just like “cool, I’ll take the one year, $9.4 million deal. We’ll do the same thing next year if you want. Let’s play ball!”

  16. schmitty2 says: Mar 5, 2012 3:49 PM

    flapjackdaddy says: Mar 5, 2012 3:14 PM
    They would probably save three million this season if they signed him to an extension. I guess they risk more that way in the long-term, though.

    He’s great, but he is not a $9.4M kind of guy, imho.

    Consistently leads the league or is near the top in receptions. What else would you propose he do to warrant 9.4 million? (and let’s leave the dropped SB pass out of it)

  17. sjhesketh says: Mar 5, 2012 3:52 PM

    For the life of me, I can’t understand why Welker wouldn’t be just like “cool, I’ll take the one year, $9.4 million deal. We’ll do the same thing next year if you want. Let’s play ball!”
    ***************************************

    Umm….because he’s already suffered one major knee injury and another could put his career in jeopardy?

    I’m happy the Pats tagged him because they’re a better team with him there, but I suspect he’ll be pushing hard for a longer-term contract.

  18. gregbeau says: Mar 5, 2012 4:18 PM

    A franchise receiver shouldn’t miss catchable balls. Sorry Wes.

    Of course, the Giants made a punter their franchise player, so maybe a different name for the term is what’s required.

  19. drewsylvania says: Mar 5, 2012 4:21 PM

    This was a “duh” move–and even calling that play a “drop” is a bit of a stretch.

  20. effedinLA says: Mar 5, 2012 4:27 PM

    patcheatiots says:
    Mar 5, 2012 3:31 PM
    Awwww ButterFingers Gets Big Coin.
    Gotta Love the 2 yd Catches …
    It works on most… Not the Jets Ravens and Steelers though… They Shut him Down
    ===================
    Yeah, they shut him down as they lost the games though. Only the Steelers won their game and went all the way to… Nowhere!
    Dumbass

  21. drewsylvania says: Mar 5, 2012 4:36 PM

    @gregbeau: Should an employer get rid of an employee with a stellar performance record over one questionable instance?

  22. TheWizard says: Mar 5, 2012 4:38 PM

    Probably means they won’t be going after one of the few big name free-agent WR’s

    That’s exactly what it means.

    Another year of Deion Branch diving to the ground as soon as he makes a catch.

    With those tight ends to run the slot game, I’m not sure they should be married to an overpriced Welker.

  23. clayton43 says: Mar 5, 2012 4:48 PM

    If was any other team I would say was stupid but Welker fits N.E system with 5 yard catches. I dont think he could play anywhere else and have anywhere near the same success.

  24. patcheatiots says: Mar 5, 2012 4:48 PM

    Ya Smartass They may have Won.
    Ravens Beat Themselves.
    Sanchez Blows.

    Butter Fingers Looks Cute in the Huddle Though..

  25. patsfiend says: Mar 5, 2012 4:51 PM

    Wes isn’t going anywhere. Those of you who think that Edelman can jump right in and take over for Welker are sorely mistaken. They need him, the TE’s, and a deep threat next year, and they are golden. Tom and Wes have worked hard to be on the same page a la Deion… always knows where he is when the blitz is coming, etc. Pats are not in the SB without Welker.

  26. WestCoastVet says: Mar 5, 2012 4:53 PM

    Definitely want to see some WR FA signing stories ASAP!

  27. patsfiend says: Mar 5, 2012 4:55 PM

    The team released this statement but didn’t attribute it to anyone within the organization: “Wes Welker is a remarkable football player for our team and has been a vital component to our offense and special teams since we traded for him in 2007. Utilizing the franchise designation allows both sides more time to try to reach an agreement, which is the goal. Wes remains a contractual priority and we are hopeful that he will remain a Patriot for years to come.”

  28. patpatriot7 says: Mar 5, 2012 5:32 PM

    The Patriots were seriously considering allowing Welker to test the market until the Combine, where they learned that several teams were willing to meet his price.
    Patcheatiots. You and Tony Dungy need to get a hobby. “They MAY have won.” Here’s how it works. The team with the highest number of points at the end of the game wins. All you had to do was look at the scoreboard. Oh wait, the kicker did and look what happened to him!

  29. gregbeau says: Mar 5, 2012 5:54 PM

    @drewsylvania: No, but you don’t normally reward them with a big raise either.

    Truthfully though, they probably didn’t have much choice. I like Wes but am still upset over that play. But the Pats may be getting to the point where they need to retool since they cannot win the big one any longer, it seems.

  30. stew48 says: Mar 5, 2012 8:56 PM

    Too bad some of you folks didn’t watch the SB very carefully. My eyes told me that was not a dropped pass, just one of Brady’s misfires. Get a life, folks, he had to hurry and he is then just another QB. O’Brien confirmed the “not a dropped pass”, so save your vitrol for him.

  31. bozosforall says: Mar 7, 2012 11:35 AM

    rc33 says:
    Mar 5, 2012 3:24 PM
    The dollar value assigned to the franchise tender ought to be based on the height of the athlete.

    Sincerely,
    Bob Kraft

    __
    If that were true also in the business world, Kraft would be a pauper.

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