Originally written on Larry Brown Sports  |  Last updated 10/8/12

NEW ORLEANS - NOVEMBER 30: Wes Welker #83 of the New England Patriots looks on during warm ups against the New Orleans Saints at Louisana Superdome on November 30, 2009 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)

Wes Welker joked after the Patriots’ win over the Broncos on Sunday that it was nice sticking his big game in coach Bill Belichick’s face.

Welker had 13 catches for 104 yards and a touchdown in New England’s 31-24 win, marking his third straight 100-yard game. That’s a big development for Welker, whom the Pats appeared to be phasing out of the offense the first two weeks of the season.

Julian Edelman started over Welker in the team’s first two games, and Wes didn’t even become a big part of the offense until an injury took out tight end Aaron Hernandez. I’m convinced they would have continued to keep Welker in a limited role had the injury to Hernandez not occurred, and that he’s only producing because they’re giving him the opportunity.

It was clear over the offseason when the Patriots signed Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski to long-term deals while only tendering Welker a one-year offer that he was not a part of the team’s long-term plans. It seemed obvious they were phasing him out of the offense to prove they could play without him.

Even though Welker gave a wink with his answer and appeared to be joking, I definitely think there was plenty of honest feelings behind his comment. You don’t think Welker enjoys proving his value to the Patriots at a time when they don’t feel it’s necessary to give him a big contract? If you don’t, you’re just in denial.

Keep in mind that Welker is one of the few Patriots who’s not afraid to go off script every once in a while. This comment was one of those times.

video via CSN New England

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