All that prevented last year's Patriots offense from being one of the greatest of all time was the lack of a true downfield threat. It's a testament to the greatness of Tom Brady that he was able to dominate even though teams knew exactly what he was going to do.
Things will be bit different this year with the acquisition of Brandon Lloyd. Arguably the biggest free-agent move in the offseason was Lloyd's move to New England, completing what should be the league's best offense.
Lloyd, who came to New England to reconnect with offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, is one of the league's best jump ball receivers, and his ability to pull off the spectacular catch is uncanny.
With Lloyd in the offense, teams can no longer crowd the middle of the field and key on Wes Welker, Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez. One of the biggest reasons why the Giants were able to stop the Patriots' offense in the Super Bowl was because they stuffed the middle of the field, knowing that New England did not have a viable deep threat at receiver.
Lloyd may not have his greatest year statistically, but his ability to take defenders away from Gronkowski, Hernandez and Welker will more than make up for it. Furthermore, his jump ball prowess gives Brady larger windows to throw into, something that smaller receivers like Branch and Welker can't do.
All in all, Brandon Lloyd could be the final piece to the Patriot's winning that elusive fourth Lombardi trophy.