The Norman Transcript

National Sports

January 12, 2014

Welker back on the field

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — Wes Welker says he has no apprehensions about concussions or rust as he returns to the Denver Broncos’ lineup Sunday for the first time in more than a month.

It’s the longest the 10-year pro has ever been sidelined.

Welker missed the Broncos’ last 3 1/2 games after sustaining his second concussion in a four-week span just before halftime in a game against Tennessee on Dec. 8.

The Broncos sorely missed him four days later in a 27-20 loss to San Diego, when they were just 2 for 9 on third down and suffered their only home loss of the season.

Denver (13-3) hosts the Chargers (10-7) Sunday in the AFC Divisional round.

“One of the first times I’ve been out of the game on the sidelines, so I’m very anxious to get back,” said Welker, who was cleared last week during the bye and quickly regained his rhythm with Peyton Manning.

“Yeah, when you’ve played as long as I have it comes back pretty quick. I really wasn’t too worried about that,” Welker said.

He also said he’s not going to fret about the possibility of another head injury when he lines up in the slot Sunday.

“I don’t worry about the concussions or anything like that. I just focus on my assignment, my technique and go out there and play the best I can,” he said.

Welker caught a career-high 10 TD passes in his first season with Manning after spending his last six seasons catching passes from Tom Brady in New England. He was on pace for his sixth career 100-catch season before being sidelined and finished with 73 catches for 778 yards.

Welker was one of the several free agents the Broncos signed last winter.

“I suffered disappointment, too, last year,” said Welker, whose Patriots were beaten by the Ravens 28-13 in the AFC championship a week later. “I’m just as hungry as everybody else and want to get out there and play my best.”

Breaking news, severe weather alerts, AMBER alerts, sports scores from The Norman Transcript are available as text messages right to your phone or mobile device. You decide which type of alerts you want to receive. Find out more or to signup, click here.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
National Sports
  • Indians trade Justin Masterson to Cardinals

    CLEVELAND — The Indians had little choice but to give up Justin Masterson. The trade doesn’t mean they’re going to surrender the season....

    July 31, 2014

  • Cowboys sign tackle Smith to 8-year extension

    OXNARD, Calif. — Tyron Smith has a new contract that will probably make him the most important blocker for the next Dallas quarterback after Tony Romo....

    July 31, 2014

  • Quarterback questions abound with big stars gone from SEC offenses

    MONTGOMERY, Ala. — Quarterback battles and signal-caller questions abound in the Southeastern Conference going into preseason camps around the league. Big names, not so much....

    July 31, 2014

  • Jones says Brent out of rehab, NFL question next

    OXNARD, Calif. — Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones says former defensive tackle Josh Brent is out of rehabilitation and could have his future with the NFL resolved before the team leaves training camp in California in two weeks....

    July 31, 2014

  • Ives to crew chief for Dale Jr. in 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — There was no shortage of candidates to replace Steve Letarte as Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s crew chief The list of applicants was long, but Hendrick Motorsports has always liked to groom its own talent. So the organization ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Gustafson wants Gordon’s team focused on Chase

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Jeff Gordon viewed his Brickyard 400 win as a turning point for his race team. Confidence had been building with every strong run, but his victory at Indianapolis Motor Speedway pushed his crew to another level. It was ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Mercury not thinking streak

    Brittney Griner and the Phoenix Mercury are closing in on one of the greatest records in WNBA history, the Los Angeles Sparks’ 18-game winning streak. To equal that mark, the Mercury need to win two more games, starting with defending ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Hamlin crew chief out 6 races

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — NASCAR suspended Denny Hamlin’s crew chief and car chief on Tuesday for six races because the Joe Gibbs Racing entry failed inspection following his third-place finish at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Darian Grubb and ...

    July 30, 2014

  • Bell focuses on every facet of his game

    LATROBE, Pa. — Le’Veon Bell kept watching the tape over and over, equal parts pleased and puzzled by what he saw....

    July 30, 2014

  • Sam factor may ready Rams for sensitivity class

    ST. LOUIS — To guard against another bullying scandal, NFL teams are holding sensitivity sessions during training camp....

    July 30, 2014