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Patriots, Wes Welker may still work out a long-term deal

Welker Reuters

Wes Welker is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent on March 12, but it’s still possible that the Patriots will be able to work something out to get ahead of that schedule.

The Patriots don’t want to place the franchise tag on Welker for the second straight year because that would force them to guarantee him a base salary of $11.4 million this year, but Albert Breer and Ian Rapoport of NFL Network are hearing that a long-term extension being reached before Welker hits free agency is still a possibility. That meshes with what Patriots owner Robert Kraft said this month: Kraft expressed optimism that a Welker deal could get done, although he openly worried that lawyers and agents could mess the deal up.

Welker wasn’t too thrilled about playing last season on the franchise tag, so he may be eager to test the free agency market in two weeks. And after catching 118 passes last season (the fifth time in the last six years he has had more than 110 catches), he may also be thinking that some team will pay him more than the Patriots would offer.

But Welker fits so perfectly in New England’s offense that he’s probably more valuable to the Patriots than he would be to any other team. Even if Welker doesn’t get a deal done in the next two weeks, New England is probably the best place for him.

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15 Responses to “Patriots, Wes Welker may still work out a long-term deal”
  1. enochmh2 says: Feb 25, 2013 4:00 PM

    Just no more 3rd down drops wes

  2. bullcharger says: Feb 25, 2013 4:02 PM

    Welkah! I hope he’s back. It will certainly be harder for Brady to make another run without him and Brady only has a few years left. With a cold weather Super Bowl coming it might be Brady’s best remaining chance. Maybe third time is the charm for Welker and he’ll make the big play in the big game.

  3. chrisknowsdbr says: Feb 25, 2013 4:04 PM

    In comes Danny Amendola

  4. bubbybrister/shovelpass says: Feb 25, 2013 4:11 PM

    Hey Wes, make sure you put a clause in your contract about not being responsible for any throws from Tom Brady that force you to do a full pirouette in order to catch them…especially if it is the last play in a playoff game.

  5. trojanwarrior007 says: Feb 25, 2013 4:12 PM

    someone will sign him away to weaken the Pats.

  6. chawk12thman says: Feb 25, 2013 4:16 PM

    He gets more $ from another team, for sure. He has less catches and less success in any other teams’ scheme. Stay put Welker……

  7. steelerben says: Feb 25, 2013 4:19 PM

    Welker out, Hartline in. New England won’t miss a beat and someone will over pay Welker. Book it.

  8. usmutts says: Feb 25, 2013 4:21 PM

    Welker isn’t much without Brady … but then neither is Belichick.

  9. truetrue85 says: Feb 25, 2013 4:22 PM

    I was totally jacked at the idea of signing in Danny Amendola to replace Welker, but the kid just can’t stay healthy. Need to figure out a middle ground to let him finish his career in Foxborough. Everybody will be better for it.

  10. patriots123456 says: Feb 25, 2013 5:23 PM

    Brady just restructured his contract to open up cap space.

    Could be to get a deal for Welker.

    I think they will retain him.

  11. jibzek says: Feb 25, 2013 5:26 PM

    Welker is killer in the division games. Makes a huge difference having him around to close out.

    Now they just need to get Gronk healthy so he can continue to spike it in opponents face.

    Re-sign Welker, guaranteed 13 win season.

  12. surfinbird1 says: Feb 25, 2013 6:46 PM

    Buzz around New England is that it’s almost a done deal. (5) years @ (8) mil/yr.

  13. mikebrownfaux says: Feb 25, 2013 7:06 PM

    This guy fits what the Bengals need so badly, it’s almost scarey. Of course even with the cap space to make it happen, Mike Brown will pass on making it happen.

  14. jwreck says: Feb 25, 2013 7:53 PM

    Keeping Welker at the open market price he’ll command is simply not worth it for New England. Welker is great, but, people forget he’s just a slot receiver. The greatest slot receiver of all time? Maybe. But either way, he’s going to command Vincent Jackson dollars when he isn’t a Vincent Jackson player.

    The Patriots need a true field stretching receiver to draw attention from Gronkowski and Hernandez, so that they can keep doing their thing as the core of Patriots’ offense.

  15. mattsg22 says: Feb 26, 2013 3:41 AM

    Welker for Harvin

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