The Denver Broncos will be without one of their key offensive weapons for the first four games of the 2014 NFL season.
Wide receiver Wes Welker will be suspended for the first four games this year after testing positive for a performance enhancing substance.
Per sources, Wes Welker has been suspended for four games for violating the NFL's PED policy. It was for amphetamines.— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) September 2, 2014
Welker's appeal happened two weeks ago. Parties were notified today that he lost the appeal.— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) September 2, 2014
The Broncos were considering holding Welker out anyway. But Welker appealed this b/c his reputation is important. And he lost that one.— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) September 2, 2014
Welker is also dealing with a concussion that was putting his Week 1 availability in jeopardy. He did not participate in practices last week for the Broncos after suffering the concussion Aug. 23 against Houston. It was Welker's third concussion in 10 months.
He missed just a week after suffering the first one last season, against Kansas City in November. His second concussion came three weeks later, and caused him to miss the four weeks of practice and Denver's final three regular-season games.
With him out, that means the Broncos will likely use Cody Latimer more in their offense.
This preseason, Latimer caught three of the five passes thrown his way for 66 yards vs. the Dallas Cowboys, including a long of 57 yards. He had one reception for 17 yards against the Houston Texans and one reception for 33 yards and a touchdown against the San Francisco 49ers.
Latimer is now someone to watch for late in the draft if you still have fantasy football drafts coming. He also is someone that needs to be monitored on the waiver wire if your draft has already taken place.