Originally Posted by Ozymandias
In terms of how teams will diversify their coverage assignments, Welker is the least likely of their pass catchers to receive any extra attention in terms of bracket coverage. From a gameplanning perspective, it's not that much different than Stokley last year.
That's simply not true. Welker demands a better cover corner than Stokley does, and also commands help. And if a team tries to play him in the same way that it would play Stokley, he will burn them far more than Stokley is capable of.
[quote]His impact will be minimized because he's not a big-play offensive threat, and no team will treat him as such. The way teams will defend the Broncos will make Welker seem like very much of an afterthought in terms of scheming. Stopping D. Thomas, J. Thomas, Decker are bigger priorities.[quote]
9 first downs and 3 touchdowns in two games. How on earth is that an afterthought? Neither team that's played the Broncos so far has made covering Julius Thomas or Eric Decker a higher priority than neutralizing Welker, and that's not going to change anytime soon.
If it's between stopping Welker or those other guys, which do you think an NFL defensive coordinator is more concerned with? Most likely, teams will go with the lesser of two evils.
An NFL defensive coordinator will be far more concerned with the guy who scores or moves the chains 6 times per game. As much as people here want to hand-wave away the importance of first downs, it's a really big deal and NFL DCs know that.
And to think that last year I was far more critical of Welker than 90% of this forum. Feels kinda weird to be in the position of defending him now, but I'm not surprised because this is what always happens with former players. Was the same way with Seymour and Asante.