These discussions were held independent of Tom Brady‘s contract extension. However, Brady’s new deal has freed up $15 million in cap room over the next two seasons, which gives Welker and the Pats a little more room to work with.
It’s still unclear what type of deal that each side would like, but these negotiations have been complex and contentious for more than a year. It makes all of the sense in the world for the sides to reach an agreement, but this is no certainty. Welker, who turns 32 on May 1, has 80 more receptions (672) than anyone in the NFL since the Patriots acquired him from the Dolphins in 2007. And Brady, who is signed through 2017, has completed more passes to Welker than anyone else.
I’m sure the Patriots’ plan all along with was to get Brady to sign an extension to free up more cap room in order to make it easier to give Welker an extension. I believe something will ultimately get done between both sides.