Five Broncos That Need To Raise Their Game

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Sep 21, 2014; Seattle, WA, USA; Denver Broncos wide receiver Wes Welker (83) carries the ball against the Seattle Seahawks during the fourth quarter at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

I wonder if the Patriots miss Wes Welker…

Well, at least the Broncos don’t have to ask themselves that question anymore.

Slot-receiver Wes Welker returned to the lineup versus the Seahawks and was looked to often by Peyton Manning despite not playing an overwhelming amount of downs. He’s an incredibly valuable piece to the offense’s puzzle and his workload will grow as time goes on.

This Sunday’s matchup provides a good scale as to how much Denver will use Welker.

In the preseason, Welker suffered his third concussion in less than a year. With the ever-growing concussion awareness around the NFL, the Broncos will still try and be careful in regards to how much they play Welker.

He’s a strenuous mismatch for opposing defenses when on the field, but his health is worth far more than however many catches he reels in.

Andre Caldwell and Welker might split time, or perhaps rookie Cody Latimer will finally be utilized.

Latimer hasn’t been activated for the past two games, and said last week that he wants to prove his worth to the coaching staff.

"“I just keep grinding, try to wait your turn, keep working in practice,’’ Latimer said. ”That first game, I was kind like, man, but you look and see what’s happening and keep going. I do know if I don’t practice hard, make plays in practice, they’re not going to play me. I want to keep their attention.’’"

Latimer could very well see some time on the field Sunday.

Nevertheless, Welker is still the crucial cog here in the Broncos offense. He converts the clutch third downs, acts as a security blanket to Manning, and is nearly impossible to stop between the hash marks.

Look for the number of snaps Welker gets to certainly increase, but probably not to the amount were used to seeing.