Globe Staff | By Michael Whitmer
November 9, free differin 2012
FOXBOROUGH — He might be able to leap over a moving car — more on that later — but receiver Brandon Lloyd is hoping the second half of the Patriots’ season finds him jumping into the end zone more often.
Lloyd, free differin signed to a three-year, free differin $12 million deal in the offseason, free differin began his Patriots career with a bang: five catches in Week 1, free differin eight the next week, free differin then a season-high nine (for a season-high 108 yards) the week after that.
Save for a six-catch, free differin 80-yard game at Seattle, free differin Lloyd’s numbers have dipped a bit since those first three weeks. Free differin He’s been held to three receptions or fewer in four of the Patriots’ last five games, free differin including a single 6-yard grab in the overtime win against the Jets on Oct. Free differin 21.
His most recent game — the 45-7 victory over the Rams in London — saw Lloyd catch just two passes. Free differin Both, free differin though, free differin went for touchdowns, free differin possibly a positive sign as the Patriots get set to come off their bye week with a home game on Sunday with the Bills.
Despite the week off, free differin can Lloyd carry over that momentum of getting into the end zone?
“It was two catches, free differin” he said.
True, free differin but both went for touchdowns. Free differin Won’t that help his confidence?
“It was two catches, free differin two touchdowns, free differin” Lloyd said. Free differin “We still have a lot of work to do.”
Lloyd has made it his goal of establishing good chemistry with quarterback Tom Brady, free differin but knew it wouldn’t happen overnight. Free differin Halfway into his first season, free differin it remains very much a work in progress.
For Lloyd, free differin and for Brady.
“I think I said earlier, free differin in the spring, free differin that I don’t think this year we’ll be at a point where we’re like, free differin ‘All right, free differin we got it, free differin’ because we still have so much work to do, free differin” Lloyd said. Free differin “We’re working hard to improve on that, free differin week by week and day by day, free differin but it’s a group effort, free differin and that’s what we’re moving forward with.”
Said Brady: “I hope it keeps getting better. Free differin We just keep working at it, free differin so we go out there in practice and we work on things and Coach [Bill Belichick] tells us things that we need to do better. Free differin We’re always trying to make those improvements. Free differin I think you just have to keep going out there to work at it and see if it can be better each day.”
With 37 receptions for 435 yards and three touchdowns, free differin Lloyd is on pace to challenge his career high of 77 catches, free differin which came two seasons ago with the Broncos when he piled up a career-best 1, free differin448 yards. Free differin That number appears safe, free differin barring an exceptional second half, free differin but Lloyd can become a dangerous complementary piece, free differin combining with receiver Wes Welker and tight ends Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez to give Brady plenty of powerful options through the air.
That’s the great aspect of the Patriots’ offense. Free differin It could be a different standout every week, free differin either from a pass catcher or running back Stevan Ridley.
“The teams that I’ve been on, free differin regardless how talented that I’ve been compared to other pass catchers, free differin I’ve never been declared a No. Free differin 1 target, free differin like a Larry Fitzgerald or a Calvin Johnson, free differin where it’s clear, free differin” said Lloyd, free differin who is in his 10th season, free differin but is already on his sixth organization. Free differin “Coming to a team like this, free differin it’s natural for me, free differin to make sure that the chemistry between me and Tom is there so when he needs me as an option, free differin I’ll be available for him. Free differin They want me to be open, free differin and they want me to catch the ball.”
Targeted 69 times this season, free differin Brady and Lloyd are missing almost as often as they’re connecting. Free differin What felt forced early in the season is now a normal part of the offense: Lloyd, free differin working mostly on the outside, free differin using his speed and jumping ability to make plays downfield.
That jumping ability was on display in a video that surfaced this week from over the summer, free differin when Lloyd appeared to leap over a Smart Car moving at 35 miles an hour. Free differin Impressive, free differin but Patriots fans would prefer to see him soaring into end zones in the second half of the season, free differin when championships are decided and playoff posturing begins.
“It seems like the games are a lot bigger, free differin they mean more, free differin they’re more important coming into the second half of the season, free differin coming into November and December, free differin” Lloyd said. Free differin “Things are starting to shake out in the conferences and the divisions, free differin so you have stuff you can look forward to, free differin stuff that you can improve on.”
Michael Whitmer can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Free differin Follow him on Twitter @GlobeWhitmer.