Will Patriots fans cheer or boo Wes Welker?

Will Patriots fans cheer or boo Wes Welker?
November 23, 2013, 12:00 am
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When Wes Welker left New England for the Broncos in the offseason, he took a significant portion of the Patriots offense with him. 

Throughout his time in New England, Welker served as Brady's security blanket; a reliable receiver who played through injury and was the go-to target on third down. Time after time he made the difficult catch over the middle to extend a drive or secure a win. 

But now he's a visitor. Worse, he's a visitor who now stands side-by-side with Peyton Manning. 

What kind of reaction will Welker get when he steps onto the field Sunday night in front of the fans who once adored him? 

Gary Tanguay believes Welker will get an ovation during warmups but will then be "treated like an enemy."

Andy Hart predicts a mixed reaction, trending more towards the boo birds. 

"I think there's still animosity," says Hart. "I think there are people who still blame [Welker] for the Super Bowl loss, the Super Bowl drop. If they can boo Adam Vinatieri they can boo Wes Welker. "

Welker was infamously unable to haul in a Tom Brady pass late in the team's most recent Super Bowl against the Giants; a game they would go on to lose. 

"If he catches the ball in the Super Bowl, [the Patriots] run out the clock and win the game," says Steve Buckley.

But would that have changed the course of events? Would it have resulted in Welker re-signing with New England?

Not likely.

"I don't think Bill [Belichick] ever liked [Welker]," says Buckley. "I think he wanted [Welker] out of here."

But the fans most certainly did like Welker - at least until he signed with Denver. 

Tanguay believes the primary response for Welker should be recognition for the contributions he made year after year for the Patriots, and not punishment for the way things ended.  

"You don't get the right to tell fans who pay top dollar for the tickets how to boo," argues Buckley. 

What response do you expect for Welker on Sunday?

What response would you give?