Wes Welker might take the franchise tag quietly.
Jeff Howe of NESN.com tweeted a good soldier status update on the Patriots receiver:
"On Welker, I've been told by several close to him, if he's under contract, he will honor that contract, won't hold out. We'll see."
Howe's tweet co-exists nicely with Welker's from earlier this week.
Glad that I will be a Patriot in 2012. And hopefully 13,14,15,16,17,18 he wrote after receiving the team's tag.
The optimism and cooperative spirit is swell and all, but it might not fill out Welker's wallet.
Vince Wilfork made a stink about the franchise tag a few years ago, calling the mere thought of it a "slap in the face." He ended up with a five-year, 40 million dollar deal just weeks after it was applied. Logan Mankins made a bigger mess after getting tagged, holding out for eight weeks before the Patriots gave him six years and 51 million.
So why is Welker behaving?
"That's the thing that's going to hurt him," Jermaine Wiggins said on 98.5's Felger and Mazz show. "If you look, even at his old contract, because he didn't take them to the wall like Logan Mankins. Generally, guys who hold out and say, 'I'm going to do it this way. I'm not going to be that model citizen you wanted.' Those are the guys that get paid.
"That cliche where nice guys finish last?" Wiggins continued. "That's true in the NFL. You've got to really ruffle some feathers."
Doesn't sound like that's Welker's plan.