In today’s edition of “Football Nation Today,” Alex Reimer looks at the biggest news from the first week of NFL free agency:

1st Down: Wes Welker signed with the Broncos last week, and his controversial departure from the Patriots has lead many to question just how much the Patriots wanted to bring Welker back.  There were so many questions about the negotiation, in fact, Robert Kraft addressed the media at the owners’ meetings this week, and revealed specific details about the Patriots’ relations with Welker.

Alex says though the Patriots nailed the market for Welker, they were unwilling to negotiate with him once free agency hit.  The Patriots were more concerned about winning the negotiation than resigning the player.  As a result, they have downgraded in the short-term, as they’ve swapped Welker for Danny Amendola. 

The Patriots, with Tom Brady set to turn 36 in August, should be most concerned with maximizing their championship window.  The Patriots’ moves thus far this offseason haven’t done that. 

Alex also talks about some other storylines from across the league, including the arms race out west between the 49ers and Seahawks, and the wild spending of the Miami Dolphins.

2nd Down: The NFL is considering eliminating the tuck rule, and making it illegal for a running back to lower his head while running.  Alex says though the NFL may have the right intention in mind with the rule change, it would be too difficult to enforce and would be entirely subjective.  Plus, though it may decrease the amount of concussions and head injuries running backs suffer, it could open them up for other serious injuries. 

3rd Down: In the “Big Up or Slow Down” segment, Alex debates whether there’s more than the eye can see to the odd Elvis Dumervile contract story, if the Orioles should accommodate the Ravens on opening night and if Roger Goodell went far enough when he spoke about teams questioning players about their sexual orientations at the Combine this year.

4th Down: In the “Reimer Rant” this week, Alex plays the ramblings of the “Sports Pope,” Mike Francesa, announcing the introduction of the real Pope on his radio show last week.  It is … uhh … well … something to hear.

Email Alex at, and follow him on Twitter @AlexReimer1.