• Welker back in middle of Patriots offense


    FOXBOROUGH (AP) - So much for Wes Welker's disappearing act.

    For the New England Patriots first two games, his playing time dropped. In the three weeks since then, he was on the field for more snaps than any other wide receiver in the NFL.

    Coach Bill Belichick hasn't said why Welker played only 70.5 percent of the offensive snaps in the first two games. Since then, he's played 91.1 percent, sitting out just 23 of 257 offensive plays in the last three games and bringing his total to 83.5 percent.

    Welker has had 49 passes thrown his way this season, tied for seventh among NFL wide receivers and eight behind leader Reggie Wayne of the Indianapolis Colts.

    He's second in the NFL with 38 catches, 30 in the past three games.

    Next Up: