Report: Wes Welker won’t be franchised again by Pats
There had been few moments in the past seasons when Wes Welker held the key to his own long-term future. But either the New England Patriots wide receiver was oblivious to that advantage or susceptible to falter under pressure. Such was the case in April last year when Wes Welker signed to one-year, $9.515 million franchise tender, hence rightfully working himself into a corner and losing all leverage in long-term contract negotiations with the New England Patriots.
Now, according to sources familiar with the team’s thinking, the New England Patriots aren’t expected to use a $11.4 million franchise tag for the second straight season on Wes Welker.
Wes Welker initially had leverage to restructure his five-year contract extension with the New England Patriots, coming off three straight 100-catch seasons in 2010, but he slipped up on the opportunity. The following season, the New England Patriots made Wes Welker a two-year, $16 million offer during the final season of his contract, which Welker turned down in hopes of a better deal. But after signing to the 2012 franchise tender, the following contract offers have dropped even lower in comparison.
What Wes Welker should have done was take a note out of Richard Seymor, Asante Samuel, Vince Wilfork or Logan Mankins’ negotiations with the New England Patriots, where they skipped out until the team was willing to offer a contract in accordance to market value.
Instead Wes Welker explained his ideals against holding last year in the following words:
“I think those techniques work better with other teams,” said Wes Welker. “I think the best thing you can do, as far as the Patriots, is be there and let them make the decision if they want to do something long term or not.’’
But unless Wes Welker give way again, there’s no guarantee to his return in 2013. Additionally, with Brandon Lloyd set to earn $3 million option bonus along with a $1.9 million base salary, the New England Patriots receiving corps could look quite different next season.
So, despite leading the league in second with 118 receptions, eighth with 1,354 receiving yard, and landing the first spot in YAC, Wes Welker could be looking at a pay cut, or being shown the door since the New England Patriots do not risk their future to sentimental decisions made over past achievements.