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Daily training camp overreaction: Dropped passes don't leave with Wes Welker

Posted by Erik Frenz  July 30, 2013 06:05 PM

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FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — It's hard to remember Wes Welker's 672 regular season receptions for the Patriots without also remembering his two costly postseason drops.

Welker may have left the fold, but dropped passes are here to stay.

As mentioned in today's stock report, quarterback Tom Brady was on fire Tuesday afternoon. In 11-on-11 work, he went seven-for-11 with a sack and two touchdowns. Ryan Mallett went one-for-four in 11-on-11 work.

What those stat line doesn't tell you is that three of Brady's four incompletions were actually dropped passes: tight end Zach Sudfeld, running back LeGarrette Blount and wide receiver Danny Amendola were among the offenders. One of Mallett's three incompletions was dropped by wide receiver Josh Boyce.

Four of those seven incomplete passes should have been caught. Tim Tebow's lone incompletion on his lone attempt of the drills was fired well out of the reach of his intended receiver.

Amendola has been regarded by colleague Ben Volin as the "one bright spot" among the Patriots receivers. Rookie Aaron Dobson may also fit in that description, although he did struggle in the first padded practice and was absent from the practice field on Tuesday.

Matthew Slater and Kamar Aiken both dropped easy passes in one-on-one drills. Kenbrell Thompkins dropped two passes on Monday night, and ran a sloppy route that resulted in one of Tom Brady's throws being intercepted by Aqib Talib.

So, if you watched training camp over the past two days, you might come away with the question of whether the Patriots receivers will catch the ball this season.

Of course, we overreact in this space because it's fun, but the fact remains: the Patriots receivers are leaving opportunities out on the field. That's okay in training camp, while the team is still knocking off the rust, but missed opportunities in the regular season and playoffs (hello, Welker) could be the difference between winning and losing games.

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About the author

Erik Frenz delivers analysis of the biggest news with the Patriots, including insight into the AFC East and New England's biggest rivals from a Patriots perspective. Erik is an interactive writer who engages his audience in his posts’ comments sections and on Twitter. Readers are encouraged to share their thoughts and ask questions. More »


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