One difference with Wes Welker

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Wes Welker is in his familiar place atop the Patriots' receiving charts. His 40 catches lead the team.

But one noticeable difference with Welker this season is with yards after the initial catch.

Since joining the Patriots in 2007, Welker leads the NFL in yards after the catch, with 2,320. That easily outdistances Brandon Marshall (1,670), who is second on the YAC charts.

But according to ESPN State & Information tracking, Welker has just 178 yards after the catch this season, ranking him 28th in the NFL. In total, he has 319 receiving yards on the year.

The 4.5 YAC average this year seems to reflect that Welker is still rounding into form as he returns from his left knee injury.