Last week, the New England Patriots were able to agree to terms with three-time Super Bowl champion Tom Brady on a three-year deal worth $27 million. The deal was unprecedented with Brady willing to take less money in order to help the team out in 2013 as well as the years to come. With Brady giving the Patriots more wiggle room, the team has a better chance of signing arguably the franchise’s best offensive weapon in wide receiver Wes Welker.
Although reports continue to surface that the Patriots are nearing a deal with Welker before he’s able to test the free agent market on March 12, the relationship between the two sides hasn’t gotten any better according to Jason Cole of Yahoo Sports:
What’s important to consider is Welker’s somewhat mild disdain for the Patriots right now, according to a source close to the player. Welker apparently is a little miffed at how he was treated in last year’s opener, when offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels had him targeted for a season-low five pass attempts that resulted in a season-low three receptions.
Despite Welker’s feelings about only being targeted five times to get the season underway in 2012, the perennial Pro Bowler still managed to catch 118 passes last season leading the team and tying Brandon Marshall for the second-most in the NFL behind Calvin Johnson.
With Welker arguably one of the most consistent and productive receivers in the game today, it comes as no surprise that the veteran would be upset over the way contract talks have gone over the past year. Welker is more than deserving of a new deal with New England and hasn’t exactly gotten the respect as one of the league’s elite at his position from the Patriots.
The start of NFL free agency is only a week away and the consensus seems to be that Welker will remain in New England with a new deal coming, but there’s still a chance talks will fall apart over the course of the next week which may lead to an ugly divorce between the two sides.