Not a chance. There’s no way a player — a wide receiver no less — could blow out his knee in the final game of the regular season and recover in time for the start of the following season, right? After hearing the news and seeing the video of Wes Welker at the start of the New England Patriots OTAs yesterday, I’m not sure that’s true. I haven’t yet located a video that can be embedded, but if you’re interested WBZ Boston has some footage of Welker here.
At first I was shocked to see Welker running routes and making cuts, considering he is only four months removed from major reconstructive surgery on his knee after tearing his ACL against Houston back on Jan. 3. The more I watched, the less I was surprised. Anyone who has watched Welker play knows that he does everything at 110%. While he admitted he was only able to run at 75% speed during the workout, the fact that the Pro Bowl receiver was out there with his teammates catching passes and running routes is a huge testament to his toughness and dedication.
Many have grown critical of Tom Brady now that he spends a good amount of his off-season on the West Coast, building homes with his new wife and bonding with his children. Say what you will about the Patriots quarterback, but his favorite target is clearly all football, all the time. Welker certainly has a long way to go before he is back at 100%, but at this point he seems to be well ahead of the curve. Whereas before it looked like a certainty that he would at the very least begin the season on the PUP list — keeping him out of the first six games — the question now is whether or not he’ll be ready to go in Week 1. If he is, Patriots hater or not, I can’t imagine anyone not being impressed.
Wes Welker On Field For Patriots OTA [WBZ Boston]