Patriots receiver Wes Welker unofficially officially announced via Twitter yesterday that he would be agreeing to the $9.5 million franchise tender offered by the Pats. Welker's tweet read:
"I signed my tender today. I love the game and I love my teammates! Hopefully doing the right thing gets the right results. #leapoffaith."
Welker is a loyal foot soldier (forgive the joke), almost to a fault. I think he knows that the Patriots don't bend much on contract issues, and they never break. I also think he realizes that sitting out a season, or even part of a season, would be unbearable for him to endure.
The Patriots always had the leverage in this situation. The Pats need Welker, but they also realized that Welker needs to play. If the Pats were a no-limit Texas hold-'em player, they'd have 10 WSOP bracelets and 3 Main Event titles. Because they apply the pressure. They're willing to take the risk of losing big-name players. They'll go all-in and put you to a decision for all your chips.
So maybe Wes Welker folded. Maybe he called. Maybe he realized he wants to play football (and get $9.5 million to do it) instead of poker.
In any case, the Patriots are wide-receiver wealthy. Welker will have other WRs who will spread the field and allow him to get open underneath and get YAC. I am very eager for football season to start.
117 days until Week 1.