Welker toes the line in news conference

Published Jan. 14, 2011 12:00 a.m. EST

Wide receiver Wes Welker added another footnote to the build-up to Sunday's AFC divisional playoff game between the Jets and Patriots.

Though he did not mention Jets coach Rex Ryan specifically, he managed to slip 11 references to feet or toes into his weekly meeting with reporters on Thursday, leading many to speculate that Welker was taking subtle habs at the team's coach.

Among Welker's gems, he said star QB Tom Brady is making sure the team "is putting its best foot forward," praised the "great feet" of Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis and Patriots wide receiver Deion Branch and said the Patriots have been "good little foot soldiers" this week in practice.

Last month, videos surfaced of Ryan's wife, Michelle, displaying her feet in a series of foot-fetish videos. A male voice sounding like the Jets coach was heard in one of the videos.


Ryan declined to comment on the matter, calling it a personal issue, but he did not deny the authenticity of the videos.

Welker's clever attempt at humor followed several headline-grabbing quotes from Ryan and the Jets, while top-seeded New England has remained mostly quiet after head coach Bill Belichick advised them to keep their trash talk to a minimum.

Earlier this week, Ryan billed the playoff game as a showdown between Belichick and himself and called Brady out for taunting Jets defenders during last month's 45-3 victory in New England.

Then, Jets cornerback Antonio Cromartie called Brady an "a******" for staring at the Jets sideline and pointing at Jets players after big plays.