The Patriots signed free-agent Shayne Graham to replace a sidelined Stephen Gostkowski, who left the Browns game in the second quarter on Sunday, *ESPNBoston.com* reported yesterday. Graham has an 85.2 percent success rate over his career. The Patriots will have to make room on their 53-man roster for Graham, according to ESPN.
The Pats have also signed a long snapper, Matt Katula, to replace Jake Ingram, who's had struggles this year, including in last week's 34-14 loss to the Browns in which one of his long snaps bounced in front of punter Zoltan Mesko.
New England's third-down conversion rate has suffered since the team let go of wide receiver Randy Moss, reports *ESPNBoston.com*. In the first four games with Moss, the Patriots ranked first in the NFL with a 55.3 percentage. In the last four games sans Moss, the Pats have dropped to 33.3 percent, 25th in the NFL. Quarterback Tom Brady's third-down completion percentage has dropped from 70. 6 percent to 40.5 percent; his passer rating on third down: 124.4 to 56.5.
These poor stats have bled onto the NFL rankings, as well, which came out yesterday, reports the *Boston Globe*. The Patriots rank 20th in total yardage; defense ranks 29th out of 32 NFL teams. Perhaps most alarming: with an overall ranking of 24.5, the Patriots don't bode well for a conference championship. No team since 2001 has advanced with such a low rating.
The Globe does offer a silver lining, however. It makes a point to mention no team since 2001 advanced past its conference because the 2001 Patriots, who were almost a carbon copy of the current 2010 team, won the Super Bowl.
The *Boston Herald* spoke with Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker yesterday about his dealings in the aftermath of last season's knee injury.