Evaluating Wes Welker's Long-Term Potential as a Top Fantasy WR After Week 7

Austin GreenCorrespondent IOctober 21, 2013

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - OCTOBER 20:  Wes Welker #83 of the Denver Broncos catches a pass during the game against the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium on October 20, 2013 in Indianapolis, Indiana.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Wes Welker delivered another solid performance in Week 7, proving yet again that he is an elite wide receiver in fantasy football. 

Although he failed to reach the end zone, Welker shredded the Indianapolis Colts defense with 96 yards on seven catches.

Despite sharing the workload with talented wide receivers Eric Decker and Demaryius Thomas, as well as monster tight end Julius Thomas, Welker remains a major weapon for Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos.

Manning looked Welker's way often on Sunday, targeting him 12 times. Only Decker (13) was targeted more. 

Welker entered Sunday's contest as one of the top receivers in the league, ranking seventh in receptions (37) and first in touchdowns (eight). With his impressive showing against Indy, Welker has now caught at least five passes in six out of seven games. The only game he had less than five, he made up for it with a two-yard touchdown grab. 

DENVER, CO - SEPTEMBER 29:  Wes Welker #83 of the Denver Broncos runs for a first down past DeMeco Ryans #59 of the Philadelphia Eagles after making a reception during the third quarter at Sports Authority Field Field at Mile High on September 29, 2013 in
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Despite averaging 1,243 yards over the past six seasons, I was skeptical of Welker's fantasy value in Denver. He has to share the ball with multiple big-name receivers, and he had to adjust to a new quarterback and new offense. 

However, the 32-year-old Welker has been as good as ever. 

Sunday was the first time all season that he did not catch a touchdown, but he made up for it by nearly topping 100 yards. If he scores next week against the Washington Redskins (which I'm assuming he will), he will tie his career high of nine touchdown receptions. 

Considering we are not even halfway through the season, that is an amazing feat. 

Although he is aging and on the same team as other top-flight receivers, Welker has proved time and time again that he is one of the most dangerous pass-catchers in football. 

Unless your team is loaded with elite receivers, it would be foolish not start Welker for as long as he's healthy.