Wes Welker Doesn’t Hand Out Blame as Speculation Increases About Involvement in Patriots Offense


Wes Welker Doesn't Hand Out Blame as Speculation Increases About Involvement in Patriots OffenseThe way many people see it, Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker was left out of New England's game plan in some ways on Sunday.

The way Welker sees it, though, it was just another game, with everyone doing their best to fill their roles.

"We've got a good team and some good players, and [offensive balance is] good to have," Welker told WEEI on Monday. "If we have to rely on me to make 120 catches, it's not where we want to be as an offense. We have some guys that really stepped up, and it's good to have those guys out there and making plays for us."

Much of the discussion around Welker's involvement in Sunday's game was about him sitting behind Julian Edelman, who started in the slot position. Welker got more playing time after tight end Aaron Hernandez was injured on the opening drive but still got less attention than last year, when he was an integral part of the offense.

"I wasn't sure what was going to happen," Welker said. "So I just go out there, and whenever my number's called, I go out and play. … Coaches coach, players play. That's all I can do."

Welker had missed a week of practice during training camp and said that may have hurt his preparation, although he did start in Week 1 and then caught five passes for 95 yards on Sunday.

"Obviously you want to have more reps, especially game situations against different teams and things like that, but I've been in situations where I haven't played a lot in the preseason before and been able to come out there and done just fine," he said. "You're just kind of getting the hiccups out and making sure you're ready to go."

Most people seem to agree that Welker's lack of involvement compared to previous years is less about his production and more about the Patriots seeming to not target him in their offensive sets. Both Welker and quarterback Tom Brady downplayed that speculation Monday, saying different players are used in different ways each week.

Welker has averaged 111 catches a season with the Patriots.

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