Patriots, Welker plan to work this week on long-term deal

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The report over the weekend that the Patriots and Wes Welker are $6 million apart on the guaranteed money they think Welker should get on a new contract makes it seem unlikely that Welker will sign before the July 16 deadline for franchise players to sign long-term contracts. But with a week to go, both sides plan a week of trying to work out a deal.

A league source tells Shalise Manza Young of the Boston Globe that the two sides will be working hard this week toward getting a deal done.

However, it’s fair to ask whether any amount of hard work is really going to bridge the $6 million gap between the two sides. Welker may be calculating that anything less than $20.933 million guaranteed in the first two years of the contract is simply not enough, considering that he’ll get $9.515 million guaranteed this year as the franchise player and would get at least $11.418 million if the Patriots use the franchise tag on him again next year. But the Patriots may have decided that they’re not going to guarantee him that much because they don’t know for sure if they’ll franchise him again next year — if Welker gets hurt this season or starts to show signs that he’s on the decline at age 31, the Patriots could decide to let him test free agency.

So it makes sense for both sides to spend the next week looking for a long-term solution that can satisfy everyone. But they might find out after a week of hard work that there’s simply no number that Welker will accept and the Patriots will pay.

12 responses to “Patriots, Welker plan to work this week on long-term deal

  1. If I remember correctly the first game Edelman stepped in for Welker, he caught 9 balls for close too 100 yards. Then caught another 2 touchdowns in the playoff game against the Ravens. Seems like the Pats have all the leverage here.

  2. Here’s an idea…split the difference and focus on winning a Superbowl this year.

    You’re welcome.

  3. Pretty big assumption that the Pats are going to Franchise him next year when he’s not really worth the money the guaranteed him this year.

  4. If Welker gets hurt this year, or does not play at the highest level, then he is not going to get that $11M franchise next year. He will get enough guaranteed money to live happily ever after. Welker needs to make the compromise and lets move on.

  5. He’s certainly earned a well-paid 3-year deal, if not a long-term contract. He is, after all, 31 years old and the Patriots aren’t stupid.
    Amazing; in 5 years in N.E. he’s only 3 catches short of the team record 557 grabs Troy Brown put up over the course of 15 seasons. Just as remarkable, tearing his ACL & MCL in Week 17 of 2009 season then not missing a single game in 2010. Kid’s a gamer, no doubt.

  6. Where he goes over the middle I can’t see where he wants to catch “high” balls from somebody like, say, Mark Sanchize.

    Wes is an intelligent player (i.e. not prone to waste his money on baubles, gambling, or blowing it up his nose) so I think he can get it done for a lifetime with $20 mil. Take the perfectly thrown balls from Tom Terrific and move on!

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