One of the most heralded undrafted wide receivers in NFL history is contemplating his departure from the Denver Broncos and, possibly, his retirement from the league.
No, this isn't 2007, and we're not talking about Rod Smith. Wes Welker is not expected back with the Broncos in 2015, Ian Rapoport reports, while FOX Sports' Mke Garofolo reports that the 12-year veteran is contemplating retirement.
While no final decision is made, Welker is talking openly about his decision-making process with friends and family, Garofolo reports.
Both items come as little surprise. Welker's statistical fall was sudden and precipitous last year:
- Welker hauled in 73 catches in 2013 but only 49 last year, a 33% dropoff.
- Welker tallied 778 yards in 2013 but fell to 464 yards in 2014, a 40% decline.
- Welker snared ten touchdowns in Peyton Manning's record-breaking 2013 season; he had only two in 2014. That's going from the whole pizza pie to less than two slices.
- That dropoff occurred despite playing one more game in 2014. Welker missed two games due to suspension in 2014; he missed three due to injury the year before.
- Welker had suffered three documented concussions in less than one calendar year between late 2013 and preseason 2014.
All that being said, Welker may still consider signing with someone if a team comes calling.
Wes Welker reportedly considering retirement. But only if teams don't come calling. He told me he wants to play two more years. #Broncos— Vic Lombardi (@VicLombardi) February 11, 2015
Whether he retires or heads elsewhere, this looks like the end of Wes Welker's rein in Denver.
Post updated with tweet from Vic Lombardi.