The season finale in Houston on January 3, 2010, was a tough game for Patriots fans. Not only did the Pats lose the game (which was definitely a momentum killer heading into the playoffs), the Pats lost one of their best players. Wes Welker tore his ACL while cutting on the turf. About a month later, Welker had surgery to repair his ACL that typically takes about 6 – 8 months to recover from. Wes discussed his progress recently at his youth football camp and felt good about how he was progressing. That, of course, was great news. However, nobody expected him to be on the field in time for training camp and just about everyone expected him to start the season on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list. What happened Wednesday at the Pats’ OTA’s sent a buzz throughout Patriot Nation: Wes Welker was on the field with his teammates, participating in drills and making cuts just 4 months after having surgery.
Nobody thought much of Wes when he was stretching out on the field with his teammates at the beginning of practice. However, the media crowd gathered at the OTA’s was stunned to see Wes stepping over bags in agility drills, cutting through cones, and running a hook route in which he must stop abruptly and turn back for the ball. You can see it for yourself by clicking here. On ESPN’s NFL Live, Tedy Bruschi called Welker’s appearance on the field a “statement” and that Welker was officially announcing, “‘I’m back.’” Tedy also stated that he wouldn’t be surprised to see Welker ready to play at the start of the season.
Call it crazy optimism, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see that happen. How many times have we seen “Little Wes” get hit hard by a linebacker or safety and bounce right back up? I’m not sure I’d put money on Welker starting Week One, but I think it’s safe to say that he will NOT be placed on the PUP list. How many weeks is it until the start of the season?????