Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker addresses the media during his postgame press conference at Gillette Stadium on Sunday, September 12, 2010.
Q: Are you happy with your contract?
WW: As long as we're winning football games, we're good to go.
Q: What did that first touchdown mean to you and did you keep the ball afterwards?
WW: Yeah, it was one of those deals I didn't really expect to lead off the season scoring a touchdown on our first drive. It's kind of a special deal with all the adversity and everything I've had to go through this offseason to get where I'm at. So to score on the opening drive was definitely a cool thing, so I'll definitely put that ball in a special spot.
Q: Did you play more than you thought you would today?
WW: I played about the amount I thought I would.
Q: When you first got injured, did you ever think you'd be able to make it back on the field this early?
WW: This was always my goal, to get back for Week One, if not even sooner. I didn't know how much I'd play Week One or anything, but I knew I wanted to be back and contribute to the team winning and we were able to accomplish that, so it's on to the next step.
Q: After your surgery in February, did you know that you'd be back today?
WW: I had a pretty good idea. I had it pretty much instilled in my mind that I would be back. There different scenarios kind of talked about, like P.U.P. and 'save my body' and different things like that. But that's just not in me. I can't sit there and watch my team out there playing and sit there and work out all day. I was sick of it and I was ready to get out there and play.
Q: What did Tom [Brady] say to you or in what way did he inspire after surgery back in February?
WW: When we were throwing out there in California a lot, he got to see it a lot first hand. So, he pretty much had it dialed in and seen what I could do and things.
Q: How different is where you [and the team] are now and where you were eight months ago?
WW: I feel like we've come a long way. Obviously we've added a lot of players and rookies and guys that we signed and things like that. So, the team changes from year to year, but I feel like it's a group that's really grown and has done a great job of coming together and knowing that we're in this together. The offense feeds off the defense and the defense feeds off the offense and special teams is the same way. That's the way we have to keep grinding together and come away with wins.
Q: What were your thoughts during Randy [Moss]'s comments?
WW: I don't really have any comments for you. Randy's a great teammate and he's been here - this is his fourth year now - and obviously [he's] been at the top of the game at his position and there's really nobody that can do what Randy does. It's pretty much unheard of. So, he's a great player and a great teammate and I'm glad he's on our team.
Q: Do you think you're back to 100 percent healthy yet?
WW: No, I still have a ways to go. We're not all the way there yet. And, I still have this stupid knee brace that I hate and I can't wait to burn it and everything else. But, we're getting there, slowly but surely. At the same, trying to get in some plays and help the team win however I can.
Q: You mentioned you are going to put the ball in a special place. Do you mean in a trophy case or something?
WW: Yeah, sure... I don't know - somewhere.
Q: Which are you sicker of - the knee brace or the questions about the knee brace?
WW: Yeah, they're about 50/50, about right there. At this point, I kind of feel like, 'What knee?', you know? It's time to move on and we all just had a game. I am definitely ready to move on to next week.
Q: Coming back from this major injury, do you feel you have to change your style or anything?
WW: I think as soon as you change your style, you do get hurt and bad things happen. You don't play as fast and things like that. So, it doesn't really enter my mind to change my style or what I'm doing out there - just go out there and attack them and do what I do.
Q: Did any of the Bengals say 'welcome back' after they tackled you?
WW: No, there weren't any touchy feely moments like that or anything?
Q: Is this just another game for you or is this a highlight of the year you've had?
WW: I'd like to say that it was a highlight, but it was just another game, not going out there and preparing and thinking, 'this is the big comeback' or whatever. For me, it was just getting out there playing, being out there with my teammates and trying to contribute to a win.
Q: What did you say to the doctors when they gave you the original timetable for return?
WW: It was kind of like, 'well, let's wait and see where we're at when we get there.' So, I tried to put it in their heads early and from there, they were able to see me on the field and able to get out there and play.
Q: Did you ever feel like you could prove the doctors wrong?
WW: Yeah, kind of ... you know doctors, what do they know? So, I think when they saw my quad and how all the muscles were same size as the other side, they were a little bit shocked, but at the same time, very cautious.
Q: On the team's overall performance...
WW: I think we did some really good things out there. We came out with a lot of energy and took it to them pretty early. I feel like we kept that energy throughout the game and the defense, especially, played really well. When they play like that and the team's hitting on all cylinders, it's going to be a good day for us. We just have to keep bringing that energy week in and week out.
Q: Did you know you made it into the end zone on the second touchdown?
WW: I thought I got in. I thought I was pretty sure I got in there and stuff and it looked pretty inconclusive when you looked at it from the sidelines.
Q: And the first touchdown?
WW: Oh, the first one - I was out there with the two big bodies, probably our two best blockers on the team against two corners. So, I was glad Tom [Brady] threw it out there. So, if I didn't score on that one, I might as well retire.
Q: How about when Tom [Brady] sent you deep on that fly pattern?
WW: Yeah, he [Leon Hall] made a good play on that. If I had it back, I probably would have done it a little bit differently, but Leon Hall's a great player and great athlete and he made a good on that.
Q: How have you seemingly been able to be patient when it comes to your contract situation?
WW: You know, I never really think about contracts or anything like that. I just want to go out and play winning football one day at a time and help the team win whatever way I can. That's my role on this team and something I want to do.
Q: Has the injury changed you at all?
WW: I think it's helped me not take things for granted, really do everything you can to make yourself ready to go out there and play. Do everything possible, no stone unturned and making sure that you only get one shot to go out there and play in the National Football League. I just don't want to leave any stones unturned and just want to make sure I'm giving it everything I've got and not take it for granted.