Welker told WEEI's Mut and Merloni that he's got "9.5 million reasons" why he won't be missing any games during the 2012 season. The Patriots placed the franchise tag on Welker in March, and both sides have said they want to reach a long-term extension. Yet, there hasn't been any progress on that front.
NESN.com has reported throughout the offseason that Welker would not be expected to hold out. Welker hasn't signed his franchise tender yet, but he'll do that before missing any games.
"The main thing is really just trying to keep a level head about it, and make sure you're making the best decisions for yourself," Welker told WEEI, according to ESPN.com. "But at the same time, put yourself in a position where you can play for a great team and hopefully do some great things in the future."
Welker hasn't attended the first four weeks of voluntary offseason workouts at Gillette Stadium, but his attendance — in one way or another — will speak the loudest during mandatory minicamp, which runs June 12-14. Welker hasn't committed to attending the minicamp, but he said Monday that he'd "really like to be there."
Welker will be in town this weekend for his football camp at Bishop Fenwick High School, which he was promoting Monday on WEEI. Welker doesn't need to be in New England to negotiate the contract, but sometimes, these things work out that way. Regardless of whether or not it happens this week, Welker's comments Monday served as the most positive news that has come from the contractual stalemate in weeks.