Wes Welker will return to the Patriots
Maybe it’s because it’s simply hard to imagine the Patriots offense being so productive without the tough, extraordinarily productive slot receiver. Or maybe it’s the belief that Tom Brady, having watched Deion Branch depart after the ‘05 season and fail to be replaced in ‘06, will plead to keep Welker around. But it’s difficult to believe that the business-is-business approach will allow Welker, who benefits from playing here as much as the Patriots benefit from having him, to depart via free agency after this season. He’s where he belongs. Both sides should recognize that.