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Tuesday, April 3, 2012
Don't expect controversy from Welker

By James Walker

Wes Welker and controversy have never been used in the same sentence. And that will remain the case this offseason, if we are to take the New England Patriots' Pro Bowl receiver at his word.

Welker sounded happy Tuesday when asked about getting the one-year franchise tag. That's not the norm for most top NFL players. But Welker has always been the protypical good soldier in New England.

The Patriots still have the flexibility to work out a long-term extension with Welker. I can see several reasons why they should. But New England doesn't operate on emotion. The Patriots are very business-like in all negotiations, and they may not think giving a 30-year-old receiver a contract extension is in their best interest.

Welker was asked if he was disappointed by the one-year tag, which is valued at approximately $9.4 million for next season.

"Not really," Welker said. "That's a lot of money, so I'm definitely kind of excited about it."

The "kind of" explains his preference, which is a long-term extension. But Welker will not hold out and will not cause a stir. Welker embodies the Patriots Way, even when the Patriots are not giving him what he prefers.

Right now the Patriots seem satisfied with keeping Welker for at least one more season. Maybe that will change by the end of the summer. But you won't get any bad press out of Welker either way.