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Wes Welker Contract Situation: Both Sides Remain Optimistic, According To Reports

Although the deadline for contract negotiations between the New England Patriots and wide receiver Wes Welker is fast approaching, a recent report from Shalise Manza Young of the Boston Globe says that there are reasons for optimism that the two parties can work out a deal before 4 p.m. on July 16.

Welker, who signed a franchise tag in May, wants a three-year contract, something the Patriots are reluctant to do given Welker's age. Young does say that sources close to the team say the two will be working very hard in order to get a deal worked out before July 16.

If the two sides can't figure out a deal before then, Welker will play the 2012 season under the franchise tag, and will not be able to talk about a contract until the season is over.

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