Wes Welker Not Expected To Hold Out From Patriots Under Franchise Tag

The New England Patriots are trying to build another strong contending team for 2012 after falling just short of another Super Bowl win in February. One of the key pieces of the puzzle that they're hoping to retain long-term is wideout Wes Welker. The Patriots applied the franchise tag to Welker in order to keep him from hitting the open market. There is still a chance that the 30-year-old Welker could hold out for the 2012 season in order to ensure he can test the open market next year, but the latest reports indicate that will probably not happen.

According to Will Brinson of CBS Sports, it is highly unlikely that Welker will hold out for the season. Very good news for Patriots fans and still a chance that the team will be able to sign the receiver to a long-term deal before the year is out.

For all news and information regarding the New England Patriots, please visit Pats Pulpit. For lots more on free agents, stay tuned to SB Nation's dedicated NFL free agency hub.

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