Rams banking on Welker to help rectify struggles on third down

Wes Welker has been among the league's best slot receivers.
Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

It remains to be seen what the St. Louis Rams are getting in newly signed Wes Welker, but the team is hopeful that the veteran wide receiver can help solve a glaring shortcoming.

“He’s really excited about where this team is going and I think he can potentially help us in a lot of different areas, specifically on third down and keeping the chains moving,” Rams coach Jeff Fisher said.

Welker was among the league's best slot receivers for much of his career but he suffered three concussions during his two years in Denver and was limited to 49 receptions last season with the Broncos. That marked his lowest total since 2005.

During a six-year run with the New England Patriots, Welker amassed 672 receptions and topped 100 catches in a season five times in a high-powered offense that utilized a devastating short passing game. 

St. Louis owns the league's worst passing attack and is dead last on third-down conversions with a success rate of 23.8 percent. The Rams have converted on 4-of-37 third-down chances over the past three games.

“We need to get better. Four in three games is not good,” Fisher said. “That’s a coaching thing. That’s a player thing. That’s a quarterback thing. It’s everybody that’s involved in that, so we’ll get better.”

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