"Through my body of work, through the past five years, I think what I've done -- I've earned a long-term deal," the four-time Pro Bowl wide receiver told ESPNBoston.com. "It's what I am looking for and what I want. Hopefully that's the case, and hopefully we come to something where we can make that happen."
Welker was a no-show last week for the start of New England's voluntary workout program. The team's minicamp from June 12-14 is mandatory, but Welker is threatening to steer clear.
"I'm not 100 percent sure on that," Welker said. "I don't know if I will or not. I'm thinking I'm probably not going to, but things could change. We'll just see how it all plays out."
It's too early to melt with concern. Teams have until July 15 to sign a franchise player to a long-term deal, and the Patriots haven't ruled out taking care of Welker.
Until then, don't expect Welker to play along. It's part of a trend we're seeing league-wide. When NFL Network insider Jason La Canfora recently spoke with an agent who represents a franchised player, he asked if there was "zero percent chance" the player would report to voluntary team workouts without a new contract.
For Welker -- a man with 554 catches in five seasons -- playing 2012 under the franchise tag, only to have it slapped on him again in 2013, is nothing more than a career gamble.
"You want that long-term deal and that security," said Welker, who's 31. "Toward the end next season, if we're still in the same spot, it's going to be the same scenario again. I'll be sitting on another winning lottery ticket, and all I have to do is stay healthy through the next year. It's kind of hard as a player because you just want to go out there and play and be able to do everything you want to do and play well and not worry about getting hurt or getting injured."