The good news for the Broncos and receiver Wes Welker is that he may not be suspended for Week One. The bad news for the Broncos and Welker is that it may not matter, since he has yet to be cleared to play.
The worst news for the Broncos is that, if the NFL had finalized the Welker suspension by Saturday, the Broncos would have been able to keep someone they’d cut on the roster for at least the first four weeks of the season, since Welker would have been placed on the reserve/suspended list based on his four-game suspension for violating the PED policy.
One of the many things learned the during StarCaps case was that suspensions routinely are announced by Tuesday, since that’s the start of the work week. As of Wednesday, Welker will practice and in turn be eligible to be paid for the week.
It means that, when Welker eventually is suspended (he will be), he’ll be more likely to miss a game that he would have been able to play, in light of his most recent concussion. It also means that someone like safety Duke Ihenacho could have been kept around for the first month of the year.
For now, it means that, if Welker receives clearance to play on Sunday night against the Colts, he’ll be in the lineup — barring a dramatic departure by the NFL from its past practices.