Last Wednesday, the perception was that Wes Welker was in Denver with an offer from the Broncos and waiting to find out if the Patriots would match it to keep him in New England. Welker signed a deal that was reported that day as being $12 million over two years, so the perception was the Patriots let Welker go over $2 million. But the dynamic, as it turns out, wasn't as dramatic as it was represented. The Patriots weren't stonewalling a $2 million raise; they were throwing up their hands at what they considered the unrealistic contract demands of Welker's agents. A) The Patriots told Welker on Tuesday that he needed to make a decision on their offer of two years and $10 million plus incentives or the team would move on. The Welker camp, clinging to a hope of getting at least $16 million guaranteed, wasn't interested. B) The Patriots moved immediately to sign Danny Amendola when free agency began, agreeing to a five-year, $31 million deal Tuesday evening. Because the deal wouldn't be officially done pending a physical Amendola was taking Thursday morning, the Patriots didn't share the news with their preferred channel of news-breakers. And Amendola's agent, Erik Burkhardt, didn't want the news out there in case the Patriots got cold feet and returned to Welker before the physical was performed on Amendola. If that occurred, Burkhardt would look like he jumped the gun and the other teams interested in Amendola would be able to shave their higher offers down to the level of the Patriots' offer. C) Because neither Welker nor his agents knew of the Amendola deal conclusively, they were of a mind the Patriots would still come up with their offer to fend off the Broncos' advances on Wednesday.
Kraft: $2M gap with Welker would have been closed 'in a second'
NBC Sports Boston | Mar 19