Wes Welker signed with the Denver Broncos on Wednesday, and there has been a ton of speculation about whether it was more his decision to leave or the decision of the New England Patriots to push him away. If Welker did indeed return to the Patriots after he was offered a two-year, $12 million contract from the Broncos to give New England a chance to match, why didn’t they want him at such a reasonable price?
Perhaps the reason is that the Patriots had already signed Danny Amendola. According to CSNNE.com’s Tom E. Curran, New England actually inked a deal with the former St. Louis Rams wideout on Tuesday. Apparently the Patriots had already made up their minds when Welker’s camp informed them that the 32-year-old would be testing the free agent market and seeking an annual salary of somewhere in the $8 million to $9 million-per-season range.
Curran said that the Patriots’ line of thinking was that they could not afford to miss out on both Welker and Amnendola. Since their offer to Wes was reportedly two years, $10 million, they clearly realized they were nowhere near the $8 million his agents said he would seek on the open market. In other words, New England did not react to the Broncos signing Welker by quickly locking down Amendola — he was already a Patriot.
It’s obvious that the Patriots did not value Welker all that highly. However, you have to wonder if they would have matched the two-year, $12 million offer had they not already gone ahead and signed Amendola. Perhaps they thought there were teams out there who would have offered significantly more than that, thus causing them to shift their focus when they realized there would be no hometown discount offered. The dynamics of the NFL are even more crazy and unpredictable than we thought.Google+