Penalty watch: Gunner work at its best

December, 13, 2012
12/13/12
5:00
AM ET
In updating this week's "penalty watch," a few notes come to the forefront:

1. Receiver Wes Welker and special teams captain Matthew Slater both drew holding penalties. Slater's came on punt coverage at the start of the third quarter and was a good example of his effectiveness as a gunner.

2. Defensive ends Trevor Scott (neutral zone infraction) and Justin Francis (offside) were a bit too aggressive.

[+] EnlargeTom Brady
Michael Ivins/USA TODAY SportsDan Connolly, left, joins the ranks of penalized Patriots after a holding call against Houston.
3. Offensive linemen Sebastian Vollmer and Dan Connolly were flagged for holding, with Connolly's penalty his first of the season.

4. Safety Patrick Chung picked up a facemask penalty late as his tough season continues.

The full breakdown of the season (includes declined penalties):

Penalty count
Brandon Spikes -- 8
Alfonzo Dennard -- 5
Jerod Mayo -- 5
Vince Wilfork -- 5
Kyle Arrington -- 4
Rob Gronkowski -- 4
Devin McCourty -- 4
Nate Solder -- 4
Sebastian Vollmer -- 4
Tom Brady -- 3
Patrick Chung -- 3
Ras-I Dowling -- 3
Daniel Fells -- 3
Aaron Hernandez -- 3
Stevan Ridley -- 3
Donald Thomas -- 3
Jermaine Cunningham -- 2
Nate Ebner-- 2
Julian Edelman -- 2
Dont'a Hightower -- 2
Chandler Jones -- 2
Niko Koutouvides -- 2
Sterling Moore -- 2
Aqib Talib -- 2
Danny Aiken -- 1
Jake Bequette -- 1
Marquice Cole -- 1
Dan Connolly -- 1
Justin Francis -- 1
Steve Gregory -- 1
Logan Mankins -- 1
Rob Ninkovich -- 1
Trevor Scott -- 1
Matthew Slater -- 1
Ryan Wendell-- 1
Tavon Wilson -- 1
TEAM -- 4

Most called penalties
Defensive holding -- 13
Offensive holding -- 12
Defensive pass interference -- 10
Encroachment -- 9
False start -- 8
Offensive pass interference -- 5
Illegal contact -- 4
Unnecessary roughness -- 4
Intentional grounding -- 3
Offside -- 3
Roughing the passer -- 3
Face Mask -- 2
Special teams false start -- 2
Special teams holding -- 2
Special teams illegal block above waist -- 2
Chop block -- 1
Illegal formation -- 1
Illegal motion -- 1
Illegal shift -- 1
Illegal use of hands -- 1
Low block -- 1
Neutral zone infraction -- 1
Offside (special teams) -- 1
Personal foul -- 1
Special teams illegal formation -- 1
Special teams offside -- 1
12-men-on-the-field -- 2

Drawn holding penalties
Jermaine Cunningham -- 4
Chandler Jones -- 3
Wes Welker -- 3
Vince Wilfork -- 3
Brandon Lloyd -- 2
Kyle Love -- 2
Devin McCourty (1 defense, 1 special teams) -- 2
Kyle Arrington (special teams/KO coverage)-- 1
Justin Francis -- 1
Rob Gronkowski -- 1
Rob Ninkovich -- 1
Trevor Scott (special teams/KO coverage) -- 1
Matthew Slater -- 1
Brandon Spikes -- 1
(two drawn holdings on special teams vs. Rams unclear)

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter

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