In this week's issue of Sports Illustrated, NFL writer Peter King selects his mid-season All-Pro team and the Patriots placed two offensive players on his squad: WR Wes Welker and RG Brian Waters.
Of Welker, King writes: "It's a badge of honor, Tom Brady's ever-growing reliance on Welker. Last year he was targeted 123 times. This year? On pace for 190. He'll challenge Jerry Rice's yardage record.
Of Waters, he says: "He shifted from left guard in Kansas City to right with the Pats, had no offseason program in a complicated attack and has been a better player than the Pro Bowler he already was."
Though Welker has fallen off his incredible early-season receptions pace, he still has 57 catches for 824 yards. King mentioned Rice's single-season yardage record, which is 1,848 in 1995; Welker is currently averaging just under 108 yards per game, which would give him over 1,700 yards if he maintains that for 16 games.
Waters was signed Sept. 4, and started the Pats' season opener eight days later. He has played every offensive snap thus far and grading out as the fourth-best guard (left or right) in the league according to the website Pro Football Focus.
King selected Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers as quarterback of the team and his midseason league most valuable player.