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Target Practice: Tracking opportunities in Patriots passing game

Targets have been compiled by the NFL since the start of the 2009 season, and while it remains an imperfect stat ‘€” a badly thrown ball from a quarterback can often go against the record of the receiver as opposed to the quarterback ‘€” it remains a good indication of the confidence level a passer might have in his pass catcher. Here’€™s a look at the target breakdown for the New England passing game through the first 10 weeks of the 2012 regular season:

WR Wes Welker [1]:
73 catches on 105 targets
TE Rob Gronkowski [2]: 53 catches on 75 targets
WR Brandon Lloyd [3]: 46 catches on 82 targets
RB Danny Woodhead [4]: 23 catches on 28 targets
WR Julian Edelman [5]: 18 catches on 26 targets
TE Aaron Hernandez [6]: 17 catches on 24 targets
WR Deion Branch [7]: Nine catches on 20 targets
RB Stevan Ridley: Six catches on 11 targets
RB Shane Vereen [8]: Five catches on eight targets
RB Brandon Bolden: Two catches on two targets
TE Daniel Fells: Two catches on six targets
TE Michael Hoomanawanui: Two catches on three targets
TE Kellen Winslow [9]: One catch on two targets
TOTALS: 257 catches on 392 targets

By position
Wide receiver: 146 catches on 233 targets
Tight end: 75 catches on 110 targets
Running back: 36 catches on 49 targets