Patriots to franchise Welker

by Paul Raymond | Posted on Monday, March 5th, 2012

No surprise here, the New England Patriots are expected to franchise wide receiver Wes Welker by today’s 4pm deadline. Only surprise is that it’s taken the Pats this long to do so, you can only assume that they were trying to workout a long-term deal. ESPN Boston say it was to avoid a hard ball type message to a guy that the team can’t succeed without.

@AdamSchefter: The Patriots will place their franchise tag on wide receiver Wes Welker by today’s 4 pm deadline.

The Patriots are expected to assign the franchise tag to receiver Wes Welker by Monday’s deadline. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the team is waiting until the last minute. In some ways, I see it as symbolic of the club not wanting to create a “hard ball” type of message with a player who has done everything it has asked of him. They just have a difference of opinion as to the right contract at this point. (ESPN Boston)

I wouldn’t be surprised to see Welker take a little time to sign the tender, got to make the Patriots sweat a little. Remember it’s all about getting the long term riches, not a one-year payday.

I still expect a long-term deal to be done by Opening Weekend.

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