- It Is What It Is - http://itiswhatitis.weei.com -

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 15 games of the 2012 regular season:

WR Wes Welker [1]: 110 catches on 163 targets
WR Brandon Lloyd [2]: 73 catches on 126 targets
TE Rob Gronkowski [3]: 53 catches on 75 targets
TE Aaron Hernandez [4]: 46 catches on 75 targets
RB Danny Woodhead [5]: 35 catches on 50 targets
WR Julian Edelman [6]: 21 catches on 32 targets
WR Deion Branch [7]: 15 catches on 28 targets
RB Shane Vereen [8]: Eight catches on 13 targets
RB Stevan Ridley: Six catches on 14 targets
TE Michael Hoomanawanui: Five catches on six targets
TE Daniel Fells: Four catches on 10 targets
RB Brandon Bolden: Two catches on two targets
TE Kellen Winslow [9]: One catch on two targets
WR Donte’€™ Stallworth: One catch on two targets
TE Visanthe Shiancoe: Zero catches on one target
TOTALS: 380 catches on 599 targets

By position
Wide receiver: 220 catches on 351 targets
Tight end: 109 catches on 169 targets
Running back: 51 catches on 79 targets