Wes Welker regrets taunting Rex Ryan with foot references

MJD

New England Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker(notes) helped to escalate the greatest week of trash talk ever when he made 11 references to feet in a press conference before the Jets game.

The podiatric digs, of course, were directed at New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan, who had been outed a few weeks prior as the co-star of some Internet foot-fetish videos made with his wife. Earlier in the week, Antonio Cromartie had called Tom Brady a naughty word, and I guess Welker felt like he had to respond.

He now wishes he hadn't. From Karen Guregian at the Boston Herald:

When asked specifically if he felt any regret for taking on the Jets in that manner, Welker responded: “Yeah, sure I do.”

[...]

“I’m not going to get into any details about it, but I don’t think it’s worth putting coach (Belichick) in that situation,” he said. “So in a sense, I do regret it. ... As much as you might want to get enticed into that stuff, at the end of the day, it’s just not worth it.”

[...]

“It’s not always easy to keep a lid on it,’’ Welker continued, “but at the same time, there’s a greater goal, and that’s winning the game and playing good football. That’s what matters. All that other stuff doesn’t matter at the end of the day.”

It's worth noting that Welker isn't apologizing to Rex Ryan. He's not sorry for bringing a man's personal life into the workplace, for dragging a man's sexual proclivities back into the spotlight, or embarrassing a man and his wife.

His regrets are for making things harder on his own coach and organization. It doesn't sound like he's sorry for what he did, necessarily, as much as he's sorry that his actions might have somehow hurt his own team.

In other words, I don't think Welker would have felt much regret had the Patriots won.