Patriots Making Progress on New Welker Deal

Ian Logue
March 04, 2013 at 02:00pm ET

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Comforts of home

With the 4pm franchise tag deadline closing in for NFL teams, there was some positive news today regarding a new deal for wide receiver Wes Welker.

It appears the Patriots are making progress toward a new contract with wide receiver Wes Welker. (FILE:USPresswire)

According to CSNNE's Tom Curran "progress has been made" toward an extension to hopefully keep him in New England, which is good news for a team that already has some questions at that position.

Welker is coming off his 5th career 100 reception season, surpassing Marvin Harrison and Jerry Rice for a new NFL record.  He accounted for 72 of the team's 256 receiving first downs, and was also the team's 3rd down receiving leader having caught 30 receptions - nearly three times more than any other Patriots' receiver.

He signed the franchise tag prior to last season but so far it appears unlikely they won't apply the tag later today.  In the event they're able to secure Welker for the foreseeable future they can turn their attention to hopefully building some additional depth behind him.  According to recent reports it's beginning to sound like Brandon Lloyd's future may be in doubt, which is bad news considering his contribution to the team last season.

While Lloyd may not have been a guy who got much in terms of yards after the catch, he still finished with 74 catches for 911 yards and was second to Welker with 50 first downs.  That's nothing to sneeze at, and it's still production that will need to be replaced as he did a decent job outside the numbers.

For now we'll have to wait and see how things play out with Welker but the good news is it certainly seems that things are at least headed in the right direction.