Tom Brady, Wes Welker to play catch at Patriots QB's house

ByMike Reiss ESPN logo
Saturday, September 17, 2016

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Tom Brady has recruited Wes Welker as a throwing partner this weekend. The former Patriots receiver explained how it unfolded during a radio co-hosting appearance Friday on 560 WQAM in Miami.

"It was funny. I hit him up [because] I'm actually heading up to the game [Saturday], and I hit him up to do dinner Saturday night," Welker said. "[Brady] was like 'I'm going to be flying in from Ann Arbor later, but hey, how about that morning we go throw?' And I'm just sitting there, like, 'I was just thinking about dinner, but yeah, sure.' I'll get over there early and we can throw a little bit. That's the only thing we really have planned."

Brady is serving a four-game suspension to open the season as part of the NFL's Deflategate penalties against the Patriots. The star quarterback is being honored Saturday at his alma mater, Michigan.

As part of his suspension, Brady is prohibited from engaging in any football-related activities or discussions with current teammates at or away from the Patriots' facilities, which even includes working out or playing catch.

Welker, 35, was one of Brady's top targets during his six-year stint with the Patriots from 2007 to 2012, when he had 672 receptions and made the Pro Bowl five times.

"It was just funny," said Welker, who currently is a free agent. "I'm sitting there trying to have dinner and 'Hey, get your ass up here and let's go throw!' I'm like 'Geez, man, he's going to be running like two-minute drills in his backyard or something.'"

Welker appeared in eight games last season with the Rams and had 13 catches. Brady is eligible to return from his suspension after the Patriots' Week 4 game against the Bills on Oct. 2.

Saturday will be Brady's first game back in Ann Arbor since graduating in 1999. He spoke to the team Friday night and is expected to be a part of the coin toss alongside other Michigan captains on Saturday.

When visiting the Wolverines during the preseason three years ago, Brady said being voted team captain in his final two seasons was "the single greatest achievement I've ever had as a football player."

ESPN's Michele Steele contributed to this report.