BOSTON (CBS) – The New England Patriots have a pair of off-season decisions to make on a couple of key players on both sides of the ball.
Corner Aqib Talib changed the Patriots secondary when he arrived mid-season, but CSNNE’s Mike Giardi reported on Tuesday the team is concerned about giving him a long-term deal given his work ethic.
“I think there is some trepidation there because his past reputation in Tampa and not always doing the work there. Then, you never know when he might pistol-whip his sisters’ boyfriend – he has a past of off-the-field issues,” Giardi told 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Toucher & Rich on Wednesday.
“He definitely made a difference here, but there is definitely some concern about him and his unwillingness to put in extra work; not just in the film room, but in the weight room, in the training room,” he said. “They’re wondering if they give him four-years, $32 million, then what’s his motivation?”
“They like what he did for them, and they’d like to have him back, but they’re not going to give him guaranteed dollars out the wazoo because they don’t know if he could handle it,” he added.
The Patriots also have a decision to make with receiver Wes Welker, who is a free agent after receiving the franchise tag last season.
“I don’t think he gets the franchise tag. I think it’s basically ‘if we’re going to do this, you’re going to do it at our cost and our deal.'” said Giardi.
So will the Patriots throw a low-ball offer Welker’s way?
“That two-years, $16 million they offered a couple of years ago, I could see something like that,” said Giardi. “During the off-season last year when they were trying to negotiate a deal, Wes’ numbers were too high and rich for their blood. Honestly his agent did him no favors, because it was money they were asking for, the Patriots weren’t going to pay a slot receiver.”