Wes Welker: His 11 Foot Comments and Why They Were Blown Out of Proportion

Chris Eggemeyer@@chriseggemeyerCorrespondent IJanuary 14, 2011

Wes Welker: His 11 Foot Comments and Why They Were Blown Out Of Proportion

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    FOXBORO, MA - DECEMBER 06:  Tom Brady #12 (R) and Wes Welker #83 of the New England Patriots talk on the field during warms up against the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium on December 6, 2010 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
    Jim Rogash/Getty Images

    The headlines this week have been flooded with trash talking concerning the New England Patriots vs New York Jets Divisional Playoff game this weekend, which is something that we have all come to expect from this rivalry.

    While most of the talking has been coming from the Jets camp, the Patriots, despite doing their best to stay out of it all, have been making subtle jabs at their AFC East rivals, starting with Tom Brady's quiet knocks on Antonio Cromartie.

    The biggest story in this running ordeal, though, broke in the last few days, when reporters noted an unusually high amount of references to feet in a press conference with star receiver Wes Welker.

    While everyone continues to blow this out of proportion, it seems about time to start fighting back and defending Wes Welker as a strict disciple of the Bill Belichick interviewing school of thought.

    So let's delve a little deeper: Here are all 11 comments and some proper interpretations to go along with them.

Question No. 1: How Important Is Tom Brady in The Huddle?

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    EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - SEPTEMBER 19:  Wes Welker #83  celebrates with Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots against  the New York Jets during their  game on September 19, 2010 at the New Meadowlands Stadium  in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by A
    Al Bello/Getty Images

    Q: How valuable is it to have a guy like Tom Brady standing in the huddle, especially in the intense situations of the playoff atmosphere

    Welker: Having Tom in there...he does a great job of making sure everyone is on the same page and putting their best foot forward going out there and playing well and doing what they can out there.

    Since when did it become a big deal to say that Tom Brady wants to make sure the Patriots offense wants to put their best foot forward at all times? Sure, he could've used another phrase, but it seems more off-hand than a pointed statement, especially since he includes it in a list of things Tom Brady does for them.

Question No. 2: Helping Out The Rookies

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    FOXBORO, MA - DECEMBER 19:  Tight end Aaron Hernandez #85 of the New England Patriots scores a touchdown against the Green Bay Packers during the second quarter of the game at Gillette Stadium on December 19, 2010 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jim
    Jim Rogash/Getty Images

    Q: How do you approach the young guys about what to expect in the post season?

    Welker: You just talk to them. It's a playoff atmosphere and you can't just stick your toe in the water, you've got to jump right in and make sure you're ready to go and make things happen.

    Again, really, Welker isn't saying anything outlandish, and he carries out his metaphor, so it's not just like he wanted to stick in the phrase "stick your toe in the water" for laughs. He makes a good point, too.

    The "toe in the water" phrase can refer to two things: Making sure they embrace the playoff atmosphere and use it, or making sure they don't get conservative in the face of post season pressure.

    Welker is still on the right side of the line here as far as I'm concerned.

Question No. 4: How's The Excitement Level After Missing Last Year?

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    DETROIT - NOVEMBER 25: Julian Edelman #11 of the New England Patriots congratulates teammate Wes Welker #83 after a fourth quarter touchdown during the game against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field on November 25, 2010 in Detroit, Michigan. New England def
    Leon Halip/Getty Images

    Q: ...is there a little bit more excitement for you because you are getting back in the playoffs? (Referring to how Welker missed the playoffs last year due to injury)

    Welker: It is definitely a little bit different especially last year I had my foot up in the air trying to get the swelling to go down and things like that.

    Oh, come on now people, he's talking about his injury. I'm sure it's entirely true that Welker spent most of the playoffs last year propping his foot up instead of the implied alternative, which is, you know, playing football.

Question No. 5: How Frustrating Was It Not to Be on The Field Last Year?

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    HOUSTON - JANUARY 03:  Wide receiver Wes Welker #83 of the New England Patriots is tended to by medical personnel after injuring his leg against the Houston Texans at Reliant Stadium on January 3, 2010 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
    Bob Levey/Getty Images

    Q: How frustrating was it to not be on the field last year?...How did it feel not being out there last year?

    Welker: It was tough...I am definitely excited to be out there...This is what you spend all year getting ready for and you want to go out there and put your best foot forward.

    Again, does this really seem that out of the ordinary? Welker wants to go out there and make sure he's getting things done, a.k.a he wants to put his best foot forward.

Question No. 7: How Much Was Darrelle Revis Covering You in The Last Game?

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    EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - SEPTEMBER 19:  Darrelle Revis #24 of the New York Jets tackles Wes Welker #83 of the New England Patriots during their  game on September 19, 2010 at the New Meadowlands Stadium  in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Al Bello/Ge
    Al Bello/Getty Images

    Q: Can you put a number on how much Darrelle Revis was covering you on the December 6th game?

    Welker: It was definitely a little more...you've got to be ready for everything and study film on everybody...and you've got to bring it every play because he is a great player. He's got great feet, he moves around well and he does some good things out there.

    O.k., this one is really a stretch. He's talking about a cornerback having great feet. Sure, he didn't bring up much else, but great feet are a big part of great cornerbacks, so it doesn't seem all that strange.

Question No. 8: How Have You Guys Grown Since Cleveland

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    CLEVELAND - NOVEMBER 07:  Defensive back Abram Elam #26 of the Cleveland Browns watches as Eric Wright #21 intercepts the ball in front of wide receiver Julian Edelman #11 of the New England Patriots at Cleveland Browns Stadium on November 7, 2010 in Clev
    Matt Sullivan/Getty Images

    Q: Offensively, how have you guys grown as a unit since that Cleveland game?

    Welker: I think we have had some younger players really step up this year.

    So, in case you missed it, the foot reference there was supposed to be the "step up" snippet.

    If that isn't a complete stretch, I'm clearly doing something wrong here.

Question No. 9: What Makes Revis So Good?

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    PITTSBURGH - DECEMBER 19:  Darrelle Revis #24of the New York Jets warms up prior to the game against the Pittsburgh Steelers on December 19, 2010 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
    Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

    Q: What makes Revis as good as he is?

    Welker: I think he is very patient. He has good feet. He moves around really well. He understands the game. He gets his hands on you pretty well...

    I cut the list off there for the sake of space, because Welker doesn't stop there.

    In any case, this is just him reiterating an earlier point in an expanded fashion. Revis is a great cornerback, and part of the reason for that is that he has great feet. No subtext to that as far as I'm concerned.

Question No. 12: Deion Branch

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    FOXBORO, MA - DECEMBER 19:  Wide receiver Deion Branch #84 of the New England Patriots is tackled by cornerback Sam Shields #37 of the Green Bay Packers during the first quarter at Gillette Stadium on December 19, 2010 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo b
    Jim Rogash/Getty Images

    Q: What has Deion Branch brought to the offense.

    Welker: Deion is such a great player and such a great teammate. The guys is tough to cover...he runs some really good routes. Tom trusts him and they are kind of on the same page. He is another guy with great feet and he can really move around and do some great things out there.

    Yet another innocent statement about the kind of athlete a guy is and the kind of impact he can have on a game. Sure, the feet references are starting to get oddly frequent, but he still seems to be on the right side of the line for the moment.

Question No. 13: Handling The Bye Week

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    FOXBORO, MA - DECEMBER 19:  Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots talks with head coach Bill Belichick before playing against the Green Bay Packers at Gillette Stadium on December 19, 2010 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  The Patriots won the g
    Jim Rogash/Getty Images

    Q: ...how do you guys feel you will handle the bye week? Are you afraid that you have lost any momentum at all?

    Welker: To be honest with you, I feel like our practices have almost simulated a game as well as we could have...you want to make sure that you are putting your best foot forward out there and making it happen.

    Well now he's just starting to sound like a broken record. I'm fairly sure that he's said put your best foot forward and make it happen that close to each other on more than one occasion in this interview.

    Perhaps that's just his new catch phrase, like, "Wes Welker: I put my best foot forward."

    New catch phrase for the New England Patriots anyone?

Question No. 14: How Do The Playoffs Translate to Practice?

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    FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 02:  Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrates a touchdown by teammate BenJarvis Green-Ellis in the first quarter against the Miami Dolphins on January 2, 2011 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Elsa
    Elsa/Getty Images

    Q: How does the playoff atmosphere translate to practices this week of preparation? Do you sense it?

    Welker: Yeah, absolutely. We're really moving forward and we're going out there being good little foot soldiers. We are making sure we are going out there doing everything coach Belichick asks us to do.

    Ok, maybe this one is a little bit more obvious than the rest of the comments. Then again, though, haven't you ever imagined the Patriots marching along behind Bill Belichick like storm troopers following Darth Vader?

    Yeah, so have I.

Question No. 16: Dealing With The Blitz

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    FOXBORO, MA - DECEMBER 06:  Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots looks to pass against the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium on December 6, 2010 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
    Elsa/Getty Images

    Q: Is communication a big factor this week with all of the Jets blitz packages?

    Welker: You definitely have to make sure you are on top of things...you definitely have to be on your toes and make sure that you're ready to go...

    I was hoping that the final foot reference in this series of 11 would be the most point of all of them, like maybe we'd get lucky and Welker would ditch discretion and call out Rex Ryan directly, but we all know that would never happen.

    As long as Bill Belichick is coaching, there is one thing you can always count on: You will hear a lot of talking in Patriots press conferences, but you will never get any information. You'll hear about how they always have a game plan (but they'll never tell you about it), you'll hear about how well the other team play (or will play), and, of course, you'll always hear about the kicking game.

    You will never get any information out of them, though, and this is just another one of those diplomatic answers. Welker is answering the question without really answering the question by simply saying they have to be ready at all times. That's not so strange, is it?

Final Thoughts

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    You will never look at Chris Bosh the same again
    You will never look at Chris Bosh the same again

    The jury is still out on this one.

    Sure, Welker made his fair share of feet comments, but jumping to conclusions is really iffy.

    Like the article? Follow me on Twitter @chriseggemeyer

    Now that that's out of the way, get the comments flowing. Beware, though, Raptor Bosh is watching...

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