Aqib Talib leaving the New England Patriots this offseason and signing with the Denver Broncos is irony at its finest. Less than two months ago, Talib was knocked out of the AFC Championship game early in the second quarter when Wes Welker took him out on a crossing route over the middle of the field. The two are now teammates.
Talib’s exit from the game tipped the scales completely in Denver’s favor and gave the Patriots virtually no shot at stopping Peyton Manning. Bill Belichick later called the rub play from Welker “deliberate” and one of the worst plays he has ever seen. Before the Broncos invested more guaranteed money on Talib than any cornerback in NFL history has ever received, they were sure to check with their slot receiver.
Broncos called their slot receiver, Wes Welker, before engaging in serious negotiations Aqib Talib. Welker gave ringing endorsement.
— Mike Klis (@MikeKlis) March 12, 2014
Reporters asked Talib about the hit from Welker, which FOX Sports NFL rules analyst Mike Pereira said was legal, on Wednesday.
“Wes is a good friend of mine,” he said, via the Boston Herald’s Jeff Howe. “I watched the play a thousand times and I can tell you he didn’t do it on purpose.”
Welker said that he used to run the exact same play when he was with New England. Even if Talib was upset with Welker over the play, there are very few feuds $57 million can’t fix.