Snaps: Short on depth at skill positions

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Looking at the snaps played by Patriots skill-position players in Sunday's 20-18 home-opening loss to the Cardinals, while analyzing what it might mean:

QB Tom Brady -- 82 of 82

WR Brandon Lloyd -- 82 of 82

TE Rob Gronkowski -- 81 of 82

WR Julian Edelman -- 75 of 82

WR Wes Welker -- 63 of 82

RB Stevan Ridley -- 45 of 82

RB Danny Woodhead -- 37 of 82

TE Michael Hoomanawanui -- 20 of 82

FB Lex Hilliard -- 4 of 82

TE Aaron Hernandez -- 3 of 82

(Penalties and two-point conversion included.)

ANALYSIS: The Patriots were light on skill-position players on the 46-man game-day roster, missing TE Daniel Fells (shin) and RB Shane Vereen (foot) because of injuries. Both of those players could have helped. In retrospect, if the plan wasn't to use OL Dan Connolly (DNP-coach's decision) even though he was dressed as an eighth blocker, healthy WR Greg Salas might have been a better choice on the 46-man roster to provide another weapon for an offense that struggled to find its groove. Of course, it's easy to say that now. ... RB Danny Woodhead played 17 snaps over the first nine series, then played 20 snaps in the final three drives, as the offense picked up the pace and went no-huddle, which is when Woodhead often shines. ... Wes Welker was the No. 3 option at receiver -- surprising given he's their $9.5 million franchise player. Julian Edelman played over him in 2-WR packages (story here). ... The one snap that TE Rob Gronkowski didn't play came after his diving attempt on a long pass in the end zone at the end of the second quarter. He went to the sideline for a quick breather.