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Some fans believe wide receiver Brandon Lloyd is the answer to help stretch defenses beyond what Tom Brady needs. Others believe his team-friendly three-year, $12 million deal assumes that he’s simply just been brought in to take some pressure off of Wes Welker, who led the NFL in catches last season with 122.
However, most fans remain in between, gawking at his NFL-leading 1,448 receiving yards during 2010, but also at the fact that he’s been on five other teams before landing in New England.
Lloyd’s arrival to Foxboro, Mass., is no coincidence, when you factor in that the Patriots rehired ex-offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels to the same position days before last season’s Super Bowl finale.
McDaniels has coached Lloyd during two different stints, once as a head coach for the Denver Broncos during the 2009 season and again while serving as the St. Louis Rams offensive coordinator last season after Lloyd was traded on Oct. 17, 2011.
Lloyd caught 51 balls for 683 yards in 11 games for the Rams, but if you project his numbers out over a full 16-game slate, it looks something like this: 70-plus catches, just under 1,000 receiving yards, nearly 10 touchdowns.
Lloyd’s arrival is not a necessity for Brady—who has remained an elite quarterback for much of 12-year career without having an asset elite receiver (minus Randy Moss) who has the ability to stretch a defense—but it’s a nice connection that could end up being a key factor during this upcoming season.
The league as a whole has evolved into a pass-happy league with passing yards skyrocketing to new heights in the last five NFL seasons. You have quarterbacks putting up all kinds of offensive numbers and efficiency levels that even some are almost going unnoticed.
The Detroit Lions’ Matthew Stafford threw for over 5,000 yards last season, yet he remains overlooked in most fans’ eyes. Only time will tell if Lloyd’s arrival is one that doesn’t just flip the scrip on how next season plays out…it can rewrite it.