WR Wes Welker may have done himself a big disservice in contract negotiations with the Patriots Thursday when he spoke publicly about the progress - or lack thereof - in recent talks.
“There have been talks, but nothing that’s brightened anything at all,’’ Welker told the Boston Herald. “It’s actually gotten worse.’’
Welker explained that “worse’’ means the Patriots’ offer is now less than the two-year, fully guaranteed $16 million the team proposed during the 2011 regular season.
According to a team source, Welker’s decision to go public in recent weeks about negotiations has not gone over well with the Patriots; two weeks ago, when he made appearances on various ESPN programs, he made reference to holding out at least through full-team minicamp next month. His words have only increased the chances that 2012 will be his final season with the team.
Welker did sign his tender, so he will play this year. But if a long-term deal isn't done prior to the start of the season, there will be a dark cloud hanging over Welker, and it may affect his play. He's always been the consummate professional, so this isn't a big risk, but it is something to consider on draft day.