No one expects Wes Welker to be struggling to adapt to the Broncos' offense once the regular season starts. But as a player who spent so many years with Bill Belichick and developing an uncanny rapport with Tom Brady, there have been some bumps in the road for Welker as he learns what Peyton Manning and head coach Jon Fox want out of him. So, the Broncos have done something to smooth the road ahead for Welker: They have taken some of the plays that made him so successful as a Patriot.
"I'd be lying if I told you we have not studied what worked well for Wes in New England," Manning said via the Broncos' official website. "There's certain pass patterns and certain things that he's done so well for so long, you'd be crazy not to copy some of those and bring those to your offense."
Whatever shortens the learning curve. Welker is an interesting fantasy pick because we don't exactly know how he will be used for the first time in a handful of years. The assumption is Demaryius Thomas will remain Denver's top wideout, and then Welker and Eric Decker fall somewhere behind him in the pecking order. I would choose Welker before Decker, but I am not 100 percent certain the stats will justify that in the end. I think it's safe to say that the days of Welker catching 120 passes in a season are over. He is still a WR2, but I will probably look over Welker for players with more upside. I think the odds are higher that he gives you a negative or zero-sum return rather than positive.