From the Miami Herald: Welker quite a catch for Dolphins, fans Wes Welker leads the Dolphins in receptions and receiving yards -- as the receiver has morphed from fan favorite to go-to guy. BY JEFF DARLINGTON jdarlington@MiamiHerald.com She stood at the microphone amid an audience of fans, relentlessly unwilling to accept Dolphins coach Nick Saban's attempt to sidestep her question. This young woman wanted an answer. No, she needed an answer. So much so, she was willing to ask during on the air during a live broadcast of Saban's weekly radio show. ''That little stud that you have, Wes Welker, is just so great,'' she said earlier this month, referring to the Dolphins' undersized, overachieving receiver. ``I need to know if he's married. C'mon Nick, give me an answer: Yes or no.'' DRAWING NOTICE For the record, Welker has a girlfriend. But that's no shocker. And really, neither is this: After two years of anonymity in South Florida and across the NFL, Welker seems to finally be getting noticed. Three weeks into the season, Welker also is forcing defenders to check him out harder than his new admirers. For the 5-9, 185-pounder, who has become accustomed to a lack of respect for years, it's about time. ''He'll always have people [who] doubt him,'' center Rex Hadnot said. ``But I think everyone respects him as soon as they see what he's capable of doing. What he's done and the toughness he's played with, they better respect them.'' Since the start of his career with the Dolphins, Welker has always had a modest fan base, praising him for his sneaky speed and consistent ability on special teams. But now he's giving far more people a reason to cheer. ''Wes Welker [is] the type of guy that goes 100 mph every time,'' quarterback Daunte Culpepper said. ``He's going to give 100 percent on every play. That's the type of guy you want to play with.'' Welker has 14 catches (one more than Chris Chambers) for 167 yards (14 more than Chambers). Some think it will be Culpepper who will eventually help Chambers to break out this season. But it actually might be Welker. With production like this, the Dolphins' No. 3 slot receiver is going to cause defenders to give him some respect. Chambers, wide receiver Marty Booker and tight end Randy McMichael could be the beneficiaries. ''Hopefully if he continues to do that, he'll draw some attention and it may open things up for other people,'' Saban said. ``He's done a good job again for us this year.'' Welker will tell you he has done nothing different this year. He rarely gets noticed in public during his day-to-day activities when he's away from the Dolphins facility. That's the way he likes it, and as a result, he has quietly become a player recognized for his receiving skills rather than special teams. ''My goal is to go out there and play as hard and as fast as I can for every play I'm out there,'' Welker said. ``As long as I do that, I'll let everything else take care of itself.'' During Welker's senior year of high school, he did not receive a football scholarship offer until after National Signing Day. And during college, he went undrafted despite more success at Texas Tech. Even in the NFL, he was cut by the Chargers before the Dolphins picked him up. ''I'm used to it by now,'' Welker said. ``I just expect to deal with adversity. It's all I've ever known.''