Bruschi opines on Welker, Amendola

March, 21, 2013
3/21/13
5:00
AM ET
ESPN analyst Tedy Bruschi was a guest on "The Herd" with Colin Cowherd on Wednesday, and he shared his opinion on the Patriots-based hot-button topic of Wes Welker's free-agent defection.

Bruschi was asked his thoughts on owner Robert Kraft's remarks at the NFL's annual meeting.

"I was very surprised at the detail, very surprised at the emotion he was exuding as he talked about it," Bruschi answered. "He actually brought up numbers -- millions of dollars, eight here, six there, contract details, and that's not really what the Patriots do. To see him talk so openly about it, I was surprised. It almost makes me think how emotionally involved Mr. Kraft got into this one, maybe a little bit more than other negotiations. Very surprised by how candid he was and how much information he gave."

Bruschi was then asked if it ever bothered him as a player to hear about the Patriots' financial discipline.

"As professional athletes and football players, we succeed on emotion and passion. This is a sport where you need those type of traits to succeed in the NFL," he said. "You're that type of person also, so to hear Mr. Kraft talk about financial discipline and boundaries, emotionally you disagree with it. But my sense of logic says that's the way it has to be.

"It's easy to say this, 'If you really wanted Wes Welker back, you would have paid him. You would have gave him what he wanted.' But that's not their formula. They want him back, but on their terms -- 'this is what a receiver that is a certain age that we feel is going to have this [many] years left, this is how much we think you're worth.' Then they stick to those guns, that financial discipline that he's talking about, the boundaries that they set, and if you're not willing to do that you have to find somewhere else to work. That's what Wes did."

Bruschi was asked if he thinks quarterback Tom Brady is upset.

"The moves they're making are still fluid -- signing [Danny] Amendola, signing [Aqib] Talib, other needs on the roster. Tom Brady is an emotional person, too, and I think he's going to miss Wes. Wes was a good friend of his. His first choice, just like Mr. Kraft said, would have been Wes Welker. But the agreement couldn't be struck. I think Tom is going to miss [him] in that offense, especially if Amendola can't stay healthy. [Rob] Gronkowski has been out in the postseason. [Aaron] Hernandez has been hurt. It's like, 'who's reliable?' Welker was durable. Welker was reliable. How many times did he take a hit and get up? How many times have I seen Amendola take a hit and miss multiple weeks?

"Similar? Yes. Same college, similar athletes in the slot. But durability is a different trait. When somebody can take a hit and get up, and someone can't, that's a huge difference. We'll see if Amendola can stay on the field."

To listen to the audio of Bruschi's interview, CLICK HERE.

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter

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