Wes Welker No. 50 in players' poll

June, 5, 2011
6/05/11
8:10
PM ET
NFL Network is running its top 100 players poll -- as voted on by players -- and Patriots receiver Wes Welker ranks No. 50. Welker led off tonight's show (players 41-50), with Bills coach Chan Gailey his presenter.

Some comments from Gailey on the NFL Network broadcast:

1. "He makes plays on the football field. Yeah, he's got a lot of the intangible things that we like. But the bottom line is he's a playmaker."

2. "There are guys faster than him. There are guys bigger than him. He's fought his way to get to where he is. He's worked his way to get to where he is."

3. "A lot of people think he's just an underneath threat, but he gets it in so many different ways. He can get it on the quick screen. Short in-routes. Short out-routes. Double-juke route. He can get down the field in the seam. I think people don't probably give Wes enough credit for his down-the-field stuff because he is so known for the underneath."

4. "He has this great understanding of the game and of route-running and where the holes are in the defense, and how to get a guy off-balance and create just enough opening for Tom [Brady] to get him the ball. That little motion stuff he does allows him to set a guy up and keep a guy off balance. If he gets a half-step, that's all he needs."

5. "Yards after the catch are probably one of the most underappreciated stats in the NFL -- he breaks a tackle, runs through a tackle, makes somebody miss. Sometimes you say 'How did he out-run that guy to the corner after he caught the ball?' But he does. You don't know how he did it, but he did."

6. "Now with the development of Wes, and what he's done in the short area -- inside, especially third down -- he's the guy that everybody compares the next guy to. Can he be the next Wes Welker?"

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter

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