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Wes Welker’s camp says Patriots’ approach was “take it or leave it”

Robert Kraft, Wes Welker AP

The hard feelings between the Patriots and their former wide receiver Wes Welker continue.

Responding to Patriots owner Robert Kraft’s statement that Welker’s “agents misrepresented, in their mind, what his market value was,” Welker’s agents at Athletes First have released a statement to Albert Breer of NFL Network, saying that there was no negotiating with New England because the Patriots were only interested in telling Welker to take what they were offering and like it.

“[T]he Patriots made one offer to Wes Welker since the prior negotiations ended in July 2012,” Athletes First said in the statement. “Both sides also agree that this two-year offer came just hours before the start of free agency despite discussions that began at the NFL Combine. Moreover, this lone offer was presented as a ‘take it or leave it offer.’ When we asked if there was room for structural changes, we were told no. We made a counter-offer for the same term and same maximum dollar amount as their offer and it was rejected. We inquired if any of the offer’s components were negotiable and were told no. This refusal to actually negotiate made it easy to reject the Patriots offer. Nevertheless, when we received the Denver Broncos’ offer, Wes personally talked to Mr. Kraft to give the Patriots the opportunity to match it. The Patriots rejected this opportunity and Wes signed with the Denver Broncos.”

Hard feelings between Welker and the Patriots have existed since at least last year, when Welker talked about being unhappy playing for the franchise tender. It’s too bad that one of the best and most popular players the Patriots have had is leaving on such terms, but the Patriots and Welker don’t seem to like each other very much anymore.

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101 Responses to “Wes Welker’s camp says Patriots’ approach was “take it or leave it””
  1. richiedean49 says: Mar 19, 2013 6:57 AM

    And Manning says, “I’ll take it.”

  2. lostsok says: Mar 19, 2013 6:58 AM

    Dude needs a hug.

  3. ebr362 says: Mar 19, 2013 7:03 AM

    The “Patriots Way” seems to be growing old.

  4. hehateme2 says: Mar 19, 2013 7:04 AM

    Rude and cheap…. its the patriot way.

  5. 480volt says: Mar 19, 2013 7:05 AM

    This whole thing just really stinks….Wes will do great in Denver with the pampered Peyton Manning…..this deal is over and done with so both sides need to move on……go sign Dumervil and stick it to the Broncos……Go Pats!

  6. jaredo10 says: Mar 19, 2013 7:07 AM

    good 4 him.. the patriots are cheap and don’t like to pay big money they should stop bytching and look in the mirror.

  7. kingbeason52 says: Mar 19, 2013 7:08 AM

    Can we get over this Welker thing..he is already gone..boohoo..now you have Peyton throwing to you..what a rough life..

  8. j0esixpack says: Mar 19, 2013 7:14 AM

    Too bad his agent wasn’t smart enough to take the offer the Patriots made last year.

    That offer was generous compared to what the Broncos gave him. I’d guess if anything Welker is most angry at himself and his agent.

  9. jets4gold says: Mar 19, 2013 7:16 AM

    Pats don’t like to spend money I guess. Their motto is Unless you’re Brady, you’re not getting paid. Pretty crappy is you ask me. Welker is par t of the reason they’ve been successful. Can’t wait to see how they play without him. I have a feeling they won’t be good

  10. seattlerogueburner says: Mar 19, 2013 7:17 AM

    That’ll be a fun matchup this season when Denver travels to New England. Wes will be begging Coach Fox for the ball every play.

  11. blackluckz says: Mar 19, 2013 7:17 AM

    According to Reiss, Welker’s agents insisted on a $15 million singing bonus for the past two years. Keep in mind Wes also had the second highest drop rate among receivers last season. His agents drastically over estimated his market value – the offer NE proposed last year, 2 years, 16 million fully guaranteed was above market value. I cannot blame the Patriots for moving on, although from a PR perspective they bungled badly.

  12. patfanken says: Mar 19, 2013 7:18 AM

    Please, what else is the agent going to say. He botched the deal. The agent SHOULD have known by the end of the “legal tampering” period what the real market fo Wes was….and evidently he didn’t. The Pats had made a fair offer to Wes and he rejected it thinking there was a lot more out there. There wasn’t.

    The unlucky part was that by the time Wes realized that and come back, they had been forced by circumstances to move on. They couldn’t wait and watch Amendola get scouped up and possibly wind up with nothing.

    Treated Welker unfairly. As we know know, all the Pats did was:

    1. Pay Welker well over the market price when they gave him the $9,4MM franchise money.

    2. Offer him a well over the market price contract at 2 years and $8/MM, all of it guaranteed….which he rejected

    3. Offer him a deal that guaranteed him $10MM guaranteed and $6MM in incentives, most of which could be reached with a typical Welker year..

    Yeah….the Pats treated him horribly (insert sarcasm here). Now he’s in Denver where its been reported that the 2 for 12 contract ISN’T guaranteed for both years and he can be cut after one. Great job by the agents there. Is it any wonder they are on full spin-0-rama here.

    The interesting thing to watch is that Dunn has several prominent Pats players still on the team. You have to wonder about the fall out.

  13. nflrocks says: Mar 19, 2013 7:19 AM

    If true this should be kind of alarming to other players.

    If a team wants a player why wouldn’t they negotitate in good faith.

    The Pats think players should play for them for less money.

    I remember when the Pats were a terrible team for many years..

    If they keep this up they will go back there again.

  14. sbaltimore says: Mar 19, 2013 7:22 AM

    I used to think the Pats were the ideal organization. Now it’s becoming more and more clear that they are just a cheap, arrogant organization. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Dolphins stick it to them this year.

  15. tim2200 says: Mar 19, 2013 7:22 AM

    I’m a Patriot fan and I find that organization hard to take at times.
    The owner claims he wanted Welker to be a Patriot for life yet Welker got ONE contract offer from the Patriots and that was presented to Welker on Monday night before the Tuesday FA period. One contract offer and no room to negotiate the terms for a player who’s been underpaid for years, is the best slot receiver in football and who the owner claims he wanted to keep.
    Bob Kraft did not help his PR effort at all yesterday.
    Oh and the Patriots offered up more money to Danny Amendola than Welker was offered.
    A very unlikeable organization right now.

  16. pcoisma says: Mar 19, 2013 7:25 AM

    That definitely sounds like it came from the mouth of Bellichek(sp). Some PR damage control going on. I feel for Amedola, he won’t be able to do anything right for that fan base now.

  17. tommy57 says: Mar 19, 2013 7:26 AM

    Conversely, the Pats camp says Walker’s approach was “give it to me or I’m leaving.”

    Pats made the correct decision here.

  18. chuckiesez says: Mar 19, 2013 7:27 AM

    I have never been a fan of the Patriots, though I do respect Mr. Kraft. Their treatment of Welker just enforces my dislike for them. Wes has performed way beyond expectations as long as he has been there. To me, he is a top 5 receiver in the NFL, maybe top 3. He was horribly underpaid until last year, and compared to all other WR in the league, he has earned the top tier money. Go on without him NE, with your attitude of superiority. I for one hope that when he gets a chance to play against you, he rolls up 4 TD’s and 250 yds….by halftime.

  19. mblue24 says: Mar 19, 2013 7:32 AM

    Welker wasn’t that great anyway. He was good bc of Brady and that’s all. He will not succeed in Denver. To many good receivers and he will get lost. People always talk bad about the Patriots but they are just jealous bc there franchise can’t be a winning franchise like the Patriots. The Pateiot way must be working bc they seem to WIN all of the time.

  20. johnnyhambone says: Mar 19, 2013 7:33 AM

    Don’t believe or trust patriots owner Krafty Bob. The guy is a shyster.

  21. mornelithe says: Mar 19, 2013 7:35 AM

    Considering Welker’s agent Dunn denied even getting the widely, widely reported 16m/2y contract offer from last year, I find it hard to believe anything that’s come out of their mouths at this point.

    As far as negotiating goes, what’s to negotiate? The Patriots had a far better grasp of the market value of a slot receiver, Welker and Dunn priced themselves out of every market in the country, and were left with taking whatever they could get in Denver. In fact, for 2 consecutive years, the Patriots had a better grasp of the market for a slot receiver, than both Welker and Dunn combined.

    Welker should do well there, as Manning and Brady play very similar styles, but Welker’s camp clearly screwed the pooch on this. The Pats most certainly could’ve overpayed for a 32 yr old slot receiver with little versatility, but I think everyone in the world could predict this outcome.

    Also, notice how Bob Kraft actually came out and spoke in detail regarding the situation, and this is some unnamed source in the Welker camp.

  22. rahavort says: Mar 19, 2013 7:36 AM

    I’m a Patriots fan and are all of these stories really necessary? The deal is done and over with, don’t bring Patriots media stories down to New York Jets standards.

  23. bus1717 says: Mar 19, 2013 7:37 AM

    Oh Mr Dunn! You screwed your client over. You gambled on a much bigger payday and when the market was set you scrambled. Good Luck Wes i’m sure you’ll be happy catching balls from Peyton about the winning i’m not so sure

  24. j0esixpack says: Mar 19, 2013 7:39 AM

    Good to start the day off with a laugh seeing Jets fans assert that they’ve got the monopoly on salary cap wisdom!

  25. flash1283 says: Mar 19, 2013 7:43 AM

    They offered him a 2 year 16 million dollar contract last year (all guaranteed) and HIS agent turned it down.

    His agent DID over value his market price now he is getting less and somehow the Patriot haters spin it has the Patriots are “cheap”.

  26. schube45 says: Mar 19, 2013 7:44 AM

    Oh I’m sorry Wes were they not nice enough to you when offering you 8 mil a year? Just admit you didn’t want to be back and let it be over with.

  27. edzo82270 says: Mar 19, 2013 7:49 AM

    What’s up with all of the “Patriots are cheap” comments? Are you a fan of the team? Probably not. If you were, you’d know that Logan Mankins was the highest paid guard in the league when he signed his deal and is still top 5. Wilfork was the same and is still top 3. Same with Mayo. Brady has been top 5 the last 8 years but QB’s don’t count as they’re in a different neighborhood. They could have let Gronk and Hernandez play out the last 3 years of their deals at rookie money but, tore them up and signed both to long term deals with big bonuses/guarantees.

    This page is generally good for factual based opinions but not today. Take your shots at New England when deserved but calling them cheap is not accurate.

  28. brobroski says: Mar 19, 2013 7:51 AM

    Love when people call the Pats cheap and ignore the fact they paid Tom Brady, Vince Wilfork, Logan Mankins, Jerod Mayo, Rob Gronkowski, and Aaron Hernandez to some of the most lucrative contracts in respect to their positions. The Patriots aren’t cheap, they’re smart with their money. If Welker was worth so much why did he only get slightly more than the Pats were offering? Maybe the Pats should be more like the Jets and Cowboys and throw money around, leaving then cap straped and out of the playoffs, seems to work well for them.

  29. ialwayswantedtobeabanker says: Mar 19, 2013 7:55 AM

    I’ve never seen Kraft comport himself with an attitude of hostility toward players consistently coming through as it has with Welker – so some of that same spirit shows up in his gloating about the Roger Goodell and his strong arm tactics.

    If you think about it, his string of comments about not having to answer to Brady – after Brady took a notable PAY CUT – didn’t sit well with me either.

    Seems like we’re seeing a news side to the guy — and I liked the old side we saw a lot better. Seems like a good guy — but lately, it’s followed a bit of a different course in tenor and tone.

  30. gronkspike802 says: Mar 19, 2013 7:59 AM

    The Patriots offered him more money than the Broncos gave him. His agents thought he could get more than that so they told him not to take it. The Patriots already had Amendola in the fold and said if you don’t take it, were signing Amendola before we lose both Amendola and Welker. He didn’t take it, they signed Amendola right when Free Agency began at 4 PM Monday, Welker got an offer from the Broncos Tuesday and went to Mr. Kraft, who said they had already signed Amendola. Last year and this year the Patriots offered him more money for longer. His agents royally messed this one up.

  31. pgh15212 says: Mar 19, 2013 8:05 AM

    Those 672 catches will never make up for the one you dropped.

  32. bigbluegmen says: Mar 19, 2013 8:09 AM

    The deal is over and done with. Lets move on!!

  33. tsizzlesucks says: Mar 19, 2013 8:10 AM

    Once he turned down the 2 year, 16 mill guaranteed offer from last year he was a gonner! His agents tried(by their own admission) to get that same deal this year and were told no.
    Once they went to the market and found out that 30 other teams weren’t coming after WW and breaking the bank for a 32 y.o. slot receiver, they knew they had screwed up. So, like so many others, they all went for the short dollar…not the long dollar. If any revered pro takes a little less and stays put in one place, when his playing days are over he’ll never reach in his pocket at a restaurant, car dealership,clothing store etc. You see it in every city that has a pro franchise…

  34. 4thqtrsaint says: Mar 19, 2013 8:10 AM

    Pats Fans: Ah, we don’t need him! That Welka is a bumb! Brady doesn’t need him! Tom Brady is the best QB eva! He’s like Jesus, but clean shaven and no mullet!

  35. bigbwoy000 says: Mar 19, 2013 8:13 AM

    They went back to the Patriots & gave them a chance to match.

    The Patriots refused.

    Kraft is full if sh*t – he had last right of refusal & he didn’t match.

    I hope Peyton & Wes win a championship together. It’s what Kraft deserves.

  36. pmtlps says: Mar 19, 2013 8:17 AM

    Welker slowly turned into a jerk after becoming a Patriot they had him believing he was part of the family. If he would have never dropped that pass in the Super Bowl we wouldn’t be havingbyhis conversation.

  37. coltzfan166 says: Mar 19, 2013 8:19 AM

    Kraft wanted Welker to be a Patriot for life, huh?

  38. gronkzilla says: Mar 19, 2013 8:21 AM

    The overlooked part of this is the Patriots had made more lucrative offers while they were trying to get a long term deal instead of the franchise tag last offseason. Welker’s agents misread this year’s market and it ended up cost a pro-bowl player a few million dollars in guranteed $$.

    The Patriots seemed to have a good understanding of this offseason’s market, despite the terrible PR hit from this Welker move.

  39. sabatimus says: Mar 19, 2013 8:22 AM

    I don’t think the Pats needed Welker’s market value to be represented by his agent; I’m sure they knew full well what it was. Pretty poor excuse by Kraft. Welker’s side of things looks much more likely.

  40. jark5 says: Mar 19, 2013 8:27 AM

    “Don’t nickel and dime me son, I’m the Macaroni & Cheese guy!”

  41. rhamrhoddy says: Mar 19, 2013 8:30 AM

    The agent isn’t going to say “Boy I really misread that one. It turns out the market for slot receivers wasn’t close to what I thought it would be”.

    If blindly taking this agent’s word at face value provides another opportunity to make a negative comment about the Patriots then have at it but do you think there’s any chance he has a motive to cover his a$$?

    Besides Denver’s 2yr/12 million, no one else made a single offer. I dont believe that this was the market that Dunne promised Welker.

    It’s not a matter of being cheap. The Patriots do have a formula that they stick to and don’t let personal feelings get in the way.

    Sure it’s harsh sometimes but it’s a business model that everyone who signs with New England is aware of. And they sign with them knowing this because they have a legitimate shot at the Super Bowl every year.

  42. n0hopeleft says: Mar 19, 2013 8:30 AM

    This story will not go away. Every single time the Pats fail to convert a 3rd and short, this story will be right there for reporters to use as a crutch.

    What I’m interested in is when the Pats lose a tough one, and that one reporter has the stones to ask Tom Brady after the game, “do you feel you would’ve won if you had Wes Welker on this team?”.

    Does Brady throw the podium and go Denny Greene?

  43. pondbridge says: Mar 19, 2013 8:31 AM

    Dunn’s agency is dead-on-arrival. They couldn’t even come up with a convincing retort to Kraft’s accusations. You cost your client MILLIONS, turkeys. I’m sure that Wes has agreed to delay his announcement that you’re FIRED for a couple of months so you a bit more time for yet another unconvincing spin.

  44. bonniebengal says: Mar 19, 2013 8:42 AM

    The Patriots over the last several years have gotten players to come play for them for less money. That is not the case anymore. The underlying thought was that those players would get to win a championship. That never happened. Now the Patriots are going to have to pay up, but they seem to be under the illusion that guys will come to play for them for less money anyway.

  45. keepounding1234 says: Mar 19, 2013 8:43 AM

    A good deal is a matter of perception. If they did truly put out the best number for the situation there is no room to negotiate. It doesn’t make them cheap. they will spend to the cap. Also they are not as cold as people say. They kept troy brown around for 2007.

  46. bullcharger says: Mar 19, 2013 8:43 AM

    I am sure there was plenty of negotiation over the last year. At some point there is always a final offer when you refuse to negotiate further. This doesn’t contradict anything that Kraft said.

    In the end, they had met the number of what they thought Welker was worth and they didn’t like Welker holding another contract over their head.

    That’s negotiation 101. That’s right out of the handbook of how you should run an organization.

    It’s not like they were undercutting Welker by much… it’s essentially the same or even better deal than he ended up taking with Denver but it had more performance risk. I would have thought someone would give him more than that, but the Patriots had the right range.

    As Kraft said, the big mistake was not rolling the 10 mil guaranteed they paid him last year into a longer term contract. That’s when they screwed up.

  47. bartlettruss says: Mar 19, 2013 8:45 AM

    Someone is lying.

  48. jmblosser82 says: Mar 19, 2013 8:50 AM

    Wes is in decline, too many big drops in the past 2 years. Danny is not the answer tho, unless he stays healthy. Gronkowski and Hernandez can’t do everything. They made the mistake of letting Lloyd go cause now they have all the hopes in the injury case. Don’t see a SB in their future but no real threat in the division.

  49. tunescribe says: Mar 19, 2013 8:53 AM

    Welker’s agent was angling for a big free-agency cashin-in from the start. That’s why he turned down a prior offer from the Pats (before they franchised him last year) that would’ve far exceeded what he ended up getting from Denver. The agent grossly misjudged the market. When he was out there tilting at windmills the Pats had to snag Danny Amendola or else lose him as well. It really comes down to the agent running the show and Wes letting himself be led around by the nose. Once Welker finally woke up, it was too late. While it’s true that the Pats did not cover themselves in glory in handling this, they would have looked like the biggest fools had they lost out on Amendola, too. The way I see, there was no way Welker wasn’t going to test the market. The Patriots acted to protect themselves. It sucks, but there it is.

  50. iamedreed says: Mar 19, 2013 8:54 AM

    Bob Kraft is a shady liar, and all he is trying to do is save face with the NE fans. all i remember last year from the pats playoff run was all this stuff about how important Myra was to him and he loved his wife, blah blah blah

    1 year later and hes dating some smoking hot blonde who is half his age, glad they got it done for Myra!!!!

  51. albertmn says: Mar 19, 2013 8:55 AM

    As players note all the time, “It’s a business”.

    The Pats are better than most about avoiding big deals for aging players. They have done this for at least 10 years. It was 2003 that they cut Lawyer Milloy a week before the start of the season to save money.

    Based on their success over the last 10 years, I can’t argue with the way the move players. In Welker’s case, the Pats made him a star and paid him a lot of money over his career, so just move on and get over it.

  52. EJ says: Mar 19, 2013 8:56 AM

    The Patriots just cut ties with one of their best Receivers the team has ever had. Brady will suffer when he goes to throw to his old outlet and the pass is dropped. Welker may have looked better because of Brady, but Welker also made Brady look better. Business is business though, I guess.

  53. broncofanfromaustria says: Mar 19, 2013 8:56 AM

    Patriots will be good this year, even without Wes.

    But they will regret it, at the latest at the AFC Conference Championship 2014 in Denver.

    All games prior to that are just warm-ups.

  54. ijahru says: Mar 19, 2013 8:58 AM

    The agent screwed up and now he is in full damage control mode. Last year the Patriots offered Wes an above market multi year deal and his agents said no. They thought Wes could get close to Fitzgerald money. The Patriots paid Wes 9 million last year which if you go by what he signed for with Denver is 3 million higher. The Patriots offered him a 2 year contract worth up to 16 million with 10 guaranteed. Keep in mind they overpaid by 3 million last year. To say the Patriots are cheap is just stupidity coming from those who don’t pay attention to facts. Ask Mankins, Mayo, Wilfork if the Patriots are cheap.

  55. dbfan4ever says: Mar 19, 2013 9:02 AM

    Patriots are just trying to make themselves look better so they can tell Brady that they tried even if they didn’t try very hard.

  56. johnnyjagfan says: Mar 19, 2013 9:09 AM

    You know the Pats are guilty of something if the owner has to trot out details of the deal in some C.Y.A. move with the QB & fan base. Welker should have told his agent to shut it. Settle this on the field.

  57. redrew says: Mar 19, 2013 9:10 AM

    The Patriot Way has never been clearer…..low ball every player not named Brady…..then kick ‘em on their way out the door.
    My favorite part of the story is learning which Patriot beat reporters are in the bag for New England. ESPN Boston reporter Mike Reiss has been outed as Robert Kraft’s Baghdad Bob. Kraft’s every thought is being reprinted thanks to ESPN……the price of access

  58. sschmiggles says: Mar 19, 2013 9:15 AM

    I love how you continue to paint the Patriots as villains here. Where was your story yesterday when Kraft lit these guys up?

    No need to mention that Welker’s agents were demanding a $15 million signing bonus all the way up until the start of free agency, right?

    Gotta love how people act like the Patriots are the only organization that treats free agency like a business.

  59. 69finfan says: Mar 19, 2013 9:17 AM

    Contriburory negligence

  60. maurysline says: Mar 19, 2013 9:18 AM

    Patriots make the playoffs and SB year after year. Other successful teams have copied their style of how to deal with older players and big contracts throughout the league and have seen success. They set the example to cut aging players that make too much money BEFORE they see a drop in production. Teams that spend huge money , don’t watch the bottom line , and stay loyal to older names haven’t fared anywhere near as well. This is their MO……and it works….there is no argument against that.

  61. gmfw7 says: Mar 19, 2013 9:32 AM

    i understand welker’s frustartion, but this is the way the pats have always done business. it might seem cold, but they do what they think is best for their team and it seems to work pretty well. at the end of the day, welker was a system WR who had success because of brady and that system. let’s not pretend welker’s has hall of fame natural ability…troy brown averaged close to 90 receptions for a few years in welker’s role. wes gets to go play with possibly the only QB better than brady in the last 10-15 years and will do well as a leader to a duo of really talented young receivers and he’ll still get plenty of touches. the patriots get a faster, stronger and more athletic WR to plug into welker’s role. i would say welker had better hands then amendola, but the last two seasons his gone some way to discredit that statement, so basically amendola is an upgrade over welker in every sense (IF he stays healthy). You can’t blame the pats for doing what it takes to win. ooh and by the way, i’m an eagles fan, and i absolutely despise the patriots, so don’t take my comments as being a homer. i just speak the truth

  62. mullman76 says: Mar 19, 2013 9:34 AM

    Oh, the silly chowds are at it again.

    Just another example of a spoiled, entitled fanbase. But, it does help to have the commish in your pocket.

    Kraft is a crook and Belichick is a cheat. Brady is cool though. He made the most out of selling his soul…

  63. rockislander says: Mar 19, 2013 9:34 AM

    Wait, I thought Mr. Dunn said two days ago that the Patriots didn’t even make an offer (which prompted Kraft to go ballistic yesterday). But now they did? A take it or leave it offer? Which is it Mr. Dunn? Honestly, whatever with this whole story. I think both sides mismanaged this negotiation, but Welker’s agents lost a lot of guaranteed money for his client. But, when Welker plays in Foxboro next season, I will be the first to stand and give him a long ovation for how he played while a member of the Patriots. Time to move on people.

  64. harrisonhits2 says: Mar 19, 2013 9:35 AM

    Seems like everyone beating up the Pats is forgetting that Welker was originally an undrafted free agent who didn’t get paid very much by the Fins and that only the Pats saw the genius in Welker’s play.

    The Pats and Brady then made Welker both a star and quite wealthy, something on the order of 20+ million dollars wealthy which had he stayed with the Fins, their crap QBs and crap coaches at the time would not likely have become either a star or any where near as wealthy.

    So eat that and keep crying. Welker has nothing to complain about as far as te Pats are concerned. Nothimg.

    And Manning could barely throw by the end of last season with his neck problems. Remember those kneel downs in the playoffs? Manning is one good hard hit to the head or crushing sack that he lands the wrong way on from retirement. Welker will do well there but I bet his catches go down by about 20-30 and he never again hits the level of success he had with the Pats.

  65. deliveredbysherpa says: Mar 19, 2013 9:35 AM

    Good luck, Wes. It was a great run here and I am glad you thrived while you were on the Patriots. I wish you luck, but man… am I getting tired of reading all this malarky–it is time to move on.

  66. mrphelps01 says: Mar 19, 2013 9:37 AM

    So the Patriots “have a formula” for how much a player is worth? Well, 2 years at $10 million for a slot receiver who has unrivalled chemistry with its HOF QB is a terrible formula. Welker’s worth was greater to the Pats than to any other team. So, at a minimum, they should have matched Denver’s offer. Kraft’s talking out of both sides of him mouth.

  67. chris6523 says: Mar 19, 2013 9:39 AM

    I guess that is one problem I share with Wes Welker. My employer has a take it or leave it approach too.

  68. annes22 says: Mar 19, 2013 9:39 AM

    What a “great attitude” from the Patriots, considering Wes has carried them for the last few years. Good luck to Wes in Denver, and no one other than Patriot fans cares about the Patriots, they are a “law” unto themselves.

  69. plarkin88 says: Mar 19, 2013 9:44 AM

    Have you ever tried to negotiate with a side that is making unreasonable demands? Until you do, its really hard to understand the feelings and basic lack of options you have in that situation. You believe one thing, they believe another, talking becomes a waste of time. What’s clear here is that Wes got less than what he was offered two years in a row from the Pats. His true value was set by the market because his agents believed the Pats were playing low ball and were forced to prove their number on the open market. What the market proved was the Pats number was above market, but it was too late for Welkers camp to go back.

    If that Pats made what was an above market offer, your damn right it was take it or leave it, problem was Welker’s agents didn’t have the good business sense to take it. Hence he’s a Bronco for a year.

  70. milehigh719 says: Mar 19, 2013 9:57 AM

    I don’t get it. If patriots offered welker more money then why didn’t they match Denver’s offer which was less.welker gave them that option.

  71. wannabeqb says: Mar 19, 2013 9:58 AM

    Dunn screwed up and overestimated the market for WW, leading him to reject the best offer he received. Now he’s publicly blaming everyone else in an attempt to keep his client.

    Wes has been in decline and the beating he has taken for the last 5 years is showing. That’s why the Broncos contract is only guaranteed for one deal. However, I see both teams winning, Denver in the short term and NE in the long. I think Welker may be the one with regrets, especially if that press conference was anything to go by.

  72. azarkhan says: Mar 19, 2013 10:00 AM

    I definitely believe Wes Welker before I believe “BB”/Kraft. The Patriots have history of low balling players, and they did it again with Welker.

  73. fanfrommontreal says: Mar 19, 2013 10:07 AM

    To those who accused tha Patriots of being cheap, they spend all the money that the cap allow, like most teams. What do you expect them to do to pay more?

  74. ampats says: Mar 19, 2013 10:08 AM

    Love all these cheapskate statements especially from fans whose teams haven’t sniffed the playoffs in several years.

    Folks its business. Should the Patriots have waited for Wes to make his decision after FA started. Its been two years and his agents misread the market.

    Belichick makes decisions on what he perceives is best for the team and his track record is pretty good. He sees every practice/play/game of his players and possibly he sees a player beginning his decline.Welker would have never dropped that pass in the Ravens game two years ago.

    Like it or not, that is how business is done in Foxboro which is why the Patriots have been an elite team for more than the past decade and remain favorites to return to the SB this year.Belichick will always move on a year early than a year too late.

    For the last time, Amendola was not brought in to replace Welker but is another piece of an offense that needed to be retooled after playoff losses the past few seasons.

  75. thestrategyexpert says: Mar 19, 2013 10:11 AM

    Does everybody now understand the new trend in agent tactics? When you sign a player to a new team, you trash and slam the previous team as negative reinforcement that they will hopefully learn from the next time. These agents are evolving to become sneakier at getting away with infringing upon their fiduciary responsibilities.

  76. weepingjebus says: Mar 19, 2013 10:15 AM

    Newsflash: NFL player thinks he deserves more money.

  77. thewizardofbs says: Mar 19, 2013 10:21 AM

    I think the Patriots did exactly the right thing. A team cannot let an older player dictate to them what he thinks he is worth. Go Patriots, great policy, don’t change a thing! Let Welker go before his talents diminish!

    Signed: All the Dolphins fans

  78. quicktaker says: Mar 19, 2013 10:24 AM

    I think Welker had enough of Kraft’s attempts to lowball him and didn’t feel that the Kraft understood his value. Welker’s 1350 yards, 118 catches, endless 3rd down conversions, and the ability to read defenses with Brady made him worth much more than what Kraft was offering. The Patriot’s tight ends are great but Welker is a more important piece of the offense.

  79. tigerlilac says: Mar 19, 2013 10:29 AM

    These negotiations are a pox on both houses but Dunn is the one who did a very poor job by his client. The Patriots had a plan B that may be of greater value both near term and long term. Welker’s agent forced his client into a plan B that is a very poor deal in a number of respects with the lone exception that he gets to play for a contender and with a Hall Of Fame quarterback.

  80. bcgreg says: Mar 19, 2013 10:35 AM

    Wes was offered 2 years 18 mill before last year’s franchise tag was signed. The Pats absolutely predicted the market would change this year. Wes’ agents did not. You do NOT pay for past performance. Considering age and wear and tear, and the new cap, 2 years 10 mill was appropriate. You do not pay older players huge money. Could they have done 2 years 12 mill? Sure. Did Kraft want Wes to be a Pat for life? Probably, sure. The Pats are not “cheap” they spend to the cap every year. They’re not one of those teams that are 10 mill under the cap.

    Why did they give Amendola more years (it’s the same money that Wes signed for in Denver–6 mill per)? Age. Amendola is 27. Welker is 32. When the Pats lost Troy Brown, the Pats traded for Welker and gave him a 5 year deal. They lose Welker and give Amendola….a 5 year deal. They’ve been in this position before. It’s a business. At least that’s what players say all the time.

  81. tigerlilac says: Mar 19, 2013 10:37 AM

    A reminder to everyone, Welker has not complained, just his agents. He had the opportunity to overrule his agents at anytime during the contract negotiations. He took their advice and he took responsibility, blaming no one, not his agents and not the Patriots. Welker is a class act.

  82. lflib69 says: Mar 19, 2013 11:01 AM

    Well….at least his agent is admitting that the Patriots DID make an offer. The day Welker signed with the Broncos he denied the fact that the Patriots had extended an offer. I think I will believe Kraft over someone who changes his story when truth comes out.

  83. patswillreign says: Mar 19, 2013 11:10 AM

    To everyone saying that the Patriots are cheap, I think $5,000,000 a year is actually a pretty good income to play a game for a living.

  84. edelmanfanclub says: Mar 19, 2013 11:10 AM

    I heard Welker turned down 3 years 25 million last offseason, and was looking for that deal this year. New England gave a fair offer in terms of what he signed for. I personally wish New England signed him to 2 years 14 mill. But I’m ok with Amendola. I wish Welker luck in Denver, but don’t expect 100 annual catches from him. He should still get 60-70 though.

  85. bratbeach says: Mar 19, 2013 11:22 AM

    Stuff like this is stupid to me.

    There was a player available. You could’ve paid more. You didn’t. Your choice.

    There was an offer on the table. You could’ve taken it and stayed with that team. You didn’t. Your choice.

    And despite the Broncos fans we seem to suddenly think that the Patriots are rival, it wasn’t like he up an went to a hated enemy or even a team that they’ve been tangling with for years. This isn’t Johnny Damon to the Yankees or anything. It’s not the end of the world.

    Best of luck Wes. Go Patriots.

  86. rc33 says: Mar 19, 2013 11:33 AM

    Undeniable thru all of this is that the schmuck agent turned down several offers better than the one settled for. I dunno, seems accurately reading the market is part of the agent’s job. So now he’s in full-time finger pointing mode and making a new and different statement every day.
    Dumervil’s former agent is the only one out there that’s less competent than this guy.

  87. azarkhan says: Mar 19, 2013 11:37 AM

    The message sent to young Patriots like Hernandez and Gronkowski is clear–if the Patriots treat a great player and teammate like Welker shabbily, they’ll do the same to you.

  88. IBleedBlueBitchez says: Mar 19, 2013 11:54 AM

    Whats the over/under on Amendola making it to the bye week alive?

  89. sportnorcal says: Mar 19, 2013 12:07 PM

    Enough of the pathetic whining from both sides.

    The team tried to save money, the player tried to make more money. Neither is wrong – it’s a business after all.

    What is nauseating is the public posturing by both sides to try and justify their own perspective. Move on.

  90. azarkhan says: Mar 19, 2013 12:09 PM

    patswillreign says: To everyone saying that the Patriots are cheap, I think $5,000,000 a year is actually a pretty good income to play a game for a living.

    I would to if I was doing your job at your salary. But then, neither of us is a pro-football wide receiver playing in front of millions fans.

  91. CKL says: Mar 19, 2013 12:09 PM

    Look WW is an excellent player, still. Ty Law was still good when the Pats let him walk too. Seymour was still good when the Pats traded him too. Etc etc. The bottom line is regardless of tenure and past stature, the Pats will not ever ever ever pay $2 for something they value at $1. The fact Kraft said yesterday that they were willing to pay him above market shows how valuable WW truly was to them.

    I don’t blame the agency for responding because that was some pretty strong stuff from Kraft. But Kraft is not the boy who cried wolf. When he says something that vehement, it’s pretty clear he feels there was misinformation out there. I mean the man wouldn’t even sue the Herald for libel when they falsely trumpeted the assertion that there were practice tapes done by the Pats of other teams, which was a complete fabrication and very damaging.

    One thing I hope that agency does is remember the fiduciary duty for their clients and send a different member of their staff to negotiate with the Pats in the future. I don’t see anything good happening for awhile if Dunn himself shows up.

  92. theandy59 says: Mar 19, 2013 12:12 PM

    When Welker first came to the Patriots, I remember reading Gil Brandt’s comment that, while Welker was a nice pick-up, he’s not the kind of guy that wins you championships. He was right. I love Welker, but in the long run, he’s replaceable. Amendola, Edelman, and Hernandez will combine to replace Welker’s production. Without Wes on the field, perhaps Brady will get back to looking for the open man instead of looking for Welker first. Those that want to criticize the Pats handling of this apparently fail to acknowledge that they’ve had an unprecedented run of excellence over the last 12 seasons. Every season, they are legitimate contenders for the conference championship; whatever they’re doing, it’s working. Most of the consistent winners in the NFL do it the same way – the Steelers, the Ravens, even the Giants. None of those teams are inclined to overpay for past performance.

  93. cmonelisha says: Mar 19, 2013 12:48 PM

    who cares…your a bronco now, patriots lost..lets just end this story that they keep contributing to

  94. patsfan13 says: Mar 19, 2013 1:50 PM

    I liked Welker as a player, but maybe this is a blessing in disguise. With Wes gone, Brady will go to his all time favorite receiver, the open man. He’s not seen open receivers this past few years because he was primarily looking for Welker. Let’s see how this season goes. I’m keeping an open mind.

  95. psousa1 says: Mar 19, 2013 1:56 PM

    I like Welker as much as the next Pats fan. Toughest SOB in the NFL. When they did not have much of a running game prior to this season Welker was the running game. Bubble screen, 3 yard slant and he would take them for YAC for about 10 more. But I am getting tired of the pity party. Baltimore playoff game the Ravens took away the middle of the field, NYG super bowl 2 years ago they took away the middle of the field. They were daring NE to take it outside the numbers or downfield and they can’t. Hernandez signed a big deal last year and so did Gronk so they aren’t going anywhere and they work the middle of the field. They have a 3rd guy in Jake Ballard who lead TE’s in yards per catch 2 seasons ago and is hopefully heathy The numbers may say otherwise but there was a need for a change in offensive philosophy. Amendola, if healthy, is a guy who plays in the slot or split out, gets downfield and underneath. The big thing is if he is injury free of course.

  96. bubba99m says: Mar 19, 2013 2:01 PM

    Having been personally exposed to the world of contractual representation, I know all too well how common it is for agents, from time to time, to get a little lazy or careless. It doesn’t take much.

    Typically, even agents, hire other lawyers to review their work as part of due diligence, but often what they don’t do is enough research on ALL the various aspects of the profession, including collateral influences, that would affect the market, the client and the team. The theory that perception is reality does not apply to the negotiating process for pro athletes, especially in the NFL. Knowing what typically happens throughout the process, and how much time, energy and resources would be required for an agent to be in the best position to give the best advice, I am inclined to believe that Welker’s agent simply fell into the “comfort level” trap and came up short on gathering intelligence. He clearly did not search out a better view (bigger picture) of the market and the trending of values at various positions. Obviously, the Patriots DID. And they simply couldn’t wait for Wes or his agent to get up to speed.

    Both sides are doing damage control as a result. The team is having to deal with the PR fallout and Wes is having to deal with the agents failure to recognize a fair deal in a very complicated landscape. Unfortunate for both sides, but know this: the Patriots have been successful because of who they are and how they go about business. Nothing has changed. They will likely be as good or better next year than this year. They are a formidable football team between June and February and a no-nonsense business machine devoid of all emotion the remainder of the year. That is why their success is sustainable; yet also why they are not always very likeable. Whether you call them arrogant or cheap or some other ridiculous adjective, it is simply good business. The same good business that agents often fail to provide for their clients.

    I know how easy it is for players and agents to be blinded by the money, but I don’t accept that as an excuse. We may never know all the details of what transpired over the past two years between Wes and the Patriots, so, based on what we do know, there surely will continue to be a debate regarding fault. But, so be it. That’s what these forums are all about.

  97. wrap2tyt says: Mar 19, 2013 2:53 PM

    Screw what the “market” says the value of a player is… what is he worth to your team and in this case with Welker, I’d say it was a proven value… over and again. I personally don’t understand why anyone is so upset over this… it’s how the Patriots have done business for years and how they will continue to do business. This is one decision that the “Football Genius” blew that will come home to roost this season.

  98. fred4560 says: Mar 19, 2013 7:41 PM

    Patriots will be better in the long run they need speed not
    Someone who doesn’t stretch the field in the playoffs
    Plus too many key drops ….

  99. patsfanvt says: Mar 19, 2013 11:23 PM

    yeah most job contracts are take it or leave it, get over it Welker’s agent

  100. buffalobills716 says: Mar 20, 2013 1:22 AM

    Who care?And as an die hard Buffalo Bills fan,I’m happy Wes Walker’s is outta the division. And not playing for their cheaters so called Patriots. #GoBills

  101. tominma says: May 25, 2013 7:22 PM

    Do people realize that Welker’s agent turned DOWN more guaranteed money from the Pats than he accepted from Denver??? Welker can be cut at any time by the Broncos! The Pats offer was $16M GUARANTEED.

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