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Secondary ignores controversy over Welker

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Secondary ignores controversy over Welker

A lot is being made of Wes Welker's role with the New England Patriots.

Welker, who is playing under a one-year franchise tag after failing to work out a deal during the offseason, has eight catches for 109 yards through two games.

Sounds reasonable?

It does. Except last season, Welker had an NFL-high 122 catches for 1,569 yards. He had eight catches for 160 in the 2011 opener alone. He had 15 for 241 yards after two games.

This season, Welker has spent a lot of time on the bench in an offense that emphasizes two tight ends, including in a 20-18 loss to the Arizona Cardinals last week. Welker finally got on the field when tight end Aaron Hernandez got hurt.

Coach Bill Belichick was curt when asked about Welker's role and limited playing time and blew off questions earlier this week.

Quarterback Tom Brady is spreading the ball around to more targets. Now he has Brandon Lloyd in the mix. The Patriots also recently re-signed Deion Branch, who was among the final cuts before the season began.

The moves point to less Welker and more of everyone else.

"Last year we had some pretty good passing statistics to (Rob) Gronkowski and Hernandez and Welker and Branch," Brady said. "That's what good offensive football is -- not really jam it into one player -- but trying to find the open guy and make a good throws."

Just to be safe, the Ravens are assuming Welker will play a major role in Sunday's game.

"It has nothing to do with us whether he's there or not," Ravens cornerback Cary Williams said Friday. "We're still preparing the same way."

The Ravens will use a lot of nickel packages -- five defensive backs -- to combat the Patriots, who flood the field with receivers. Even without Welker being used as much, they attack in similar fashion.

"They haven't changed. That's part of their offense and something they do," Williams said. "They want to spread you out. That's fine. We're ready for that."

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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Marquise Brown to miss OTAs

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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Marquise Brown to miss OTAs

Kick off your Saturday with the latest Baltimore Ravens news including an injury update on the Ravens' first-round pick. 

Player/Team Notes: 

1. 2019 first-round pick and WR Marquise Brown will miss OTAs as he continues to recover from Lisfranc surgery. Per Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic, the team expects Brown to be ready by the start of training camp. 

2. The Ravens confirmed the signings of OLB Pernell McPhee, OLB Shane Ray, and WR Michael Floyd Friday. Baltimore also announced it had waived QB Jalan McClendon and DT Kalil Morris.

3. Free agent LB Jon Bostic worked out for the Ravens Friday, per Zrebiec. Bostic was cut by the Steelers in April. 

Looking Ahead:

July 15: 4 p.m. deadline to get a long-term deal done with designated franchise tag players.

The 2019 NFL schedule is set! See the Baltimore Ravens defend the AFC North at M&T Bank Stadium this season. Get your tickets now at www.BaltimoreRavens.com/tickets.

Credit: Rotoworld and Baltimore Ravens for news points.

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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: The return of Pernell McPhee

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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: The return of Pernell McPhee

Kick off your Friday with the latest Baltimore Ravens news including the return of Pernell McPhee.

Player/Team Notes: 

1. Pernell McPhee is a Baltimore Raven again! The Ravens signed McPhee to a one-year deal according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. McPhee was drafted by the Ravens in 2011 during the fifth round and spent four seasons with the team before landing in Chicago and then last season in Washington. The Ravens hope to capitalize on McPhee's 31 career sacks as they hone-in on producing a "diversified pass rush."

2. The Ravens have also signed offensive lineman R.J. Prince, who was last with Pittsburgh. Prince was waived by the Steelers after not seeing a down during the 2018 season. The Steelers picked up Prince as an undrafted free agent out of North Carolina.

3. Arizona Cardinals cornerback Patrick Peterson has been suspended for the first six games of the 2019 regular season. Peterson reportedly violated the NFL's performance-enhancement drug policy. The Ravens face the Cardinals during Week 2, so this is good news for the guys in purple.

4. The Ravens have reportedly signed former Denver Broncos linebacker Shane Ray, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. Ray had an unproductive season with the Broncos last year with one sack and one forced fumble in 11 games played.

Looking Ahead:

July 15: 4 p.m. deadline to get a long-term deal done with designated franchise tag players.

The 2019 NFL schedule is set! See the Baltimore Ravens defend the AFC North at M&T Bank Stadium this season. Get your tickets now at www.BaltimoreRavens.com/tickets.

Credit: Rotoworld and Baltimore Ravens for news points.

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