A report last week indicated that Wes Welker was mulling the possibility of retiring this offseason, but it looks as if the veteran wideout will continue his NFL career for at least one more season. Welker tells Mike Klis of the Denver Post that he fully intends to return to the field for 2015.
“Just getting ready for 2015,” Welker said in a text message to Klis. Asked about last week’s report about the possibility of retirement, the receiver added: “Never ever came out of my mouth.”
Mike Garafolo’s report last Tuesday suggested that, although Welker had told friends, family, and associates that he was giving some thought to the idea of retirement, he had not yet made his decision. Now, it appears he has. Of course, even if the 33-year-old plans to return to action next season, his future is still a little uncertain. He’s not under contract with the Broncos for 2015, and Denver has a handful of key free agents to retain, including Demaryius Thomas, Julius Thomas, and Terrance Knighton. Welker could be the odd man out, depending on how the team’s offseason develops.
After averaging about 106 receptions in his previous seven seasons, Welker caught just 49 passes in 2014. The dip in production coincided with increasing concerns about the veteran’s health — he suffered at least three concussions during his stint with the Broncos, prompting multiple former teammates to express some concern about his injury history.
Welker’s expiring contract with Denver was a two-year, $12MM pact. Assuming he does indeed continue his playing career, he’ll almost certainly take a paycut for the 2015 season.