Globe Staff | By Michael Whitmer
November 9, find arava 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, find arava signed to a three-year, find arava $12 million deal in the offseason, find arava began his Patriots career with a bang: five catches in Week 1, find arava eight the next week, find arava then a season-high nine (for a season-high 108 yards) the week after that.
Save for a six-catch, find arava 80-yard game at Seattle, find arava Lloyd’s numbers have dipped a bit since those first three weeks. Find arava He’s been held to three receptions or fewer in four of the Patriots’ last five games, find arava including a single 6-yard grab in the overtime win against the Jets on Oct. Find arava 21.
His most recent game — the 45-7 victory over the Rams in London — saw Lloyd catch just two passes. Find arava Both, find arava though, find arava went for touchdowns, find arava 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, find arava can Lloyd carry over that momentum of getting into the end zone?
“It was two catches, find arava” he said.
True, find arava but both went for touchdowns. Find arava Won’t that help his confidence?
“It was two catches, find arava two touchdowns, find arava” Lloyd said. Find arava “We still have a lot of work to do.”
Lloyd has made it his goal of establishing good chemistry with quarterback Tom Brady, find arava but knew it wouldn’t happen overnight. Find arava Halfway into his first season, find arava it remains very much a work in progress.
For Lloyd, find arava and for Brady.
“I think I said earlier, find arava in the spring, find arava that I don’t think this year we’ll be at a point where we’re like, find arava ‘All right, find arava we got it, find arava’ because we still have so much work to do, find arava” Lloyd said. Find arava “We’re working hard to improve on that, find arava week by week and day by day, find arava but it’s a group effort, find arava and that’s what we’re moving forward with.”
Said Brady: “I hope it keeps getting better. Find arava We just keep working at it, find arava 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. Find arava We’re always trying to make those improvements. Find arava 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, find arava Lloyd is on pace to challenge his career high of 77 catches, find arava which came two seasons ago with the Broncos when he piled up a career-best 1, find arava448 yards. Find arava That number appears safe, find arava barring an exceptional second half, find arava but Lloyd can become a dangerous complementary piece, find arava 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. Find arava It could be a different standout every week, find arava either from a pass catcher or running back Stevan Ridley.
“The teams that I’ve been on, find arava regardless how talented that I’ve been compared to other pass catchers, find arava I’ve never been declared a No. Find arava 1 target, find arava like a Larry Fitzgerald or a Calvin Johnson, find arava where it’s clear, find arava” said Lloyd, find arava who is in his 10th season, find arava but is already on his sixth organization. Find arava “Coming to a team like this, find arava it’s natural for me, find arava to make sure that the chemistry between me and Tom is there so when he needs me as an option, find arava I’ll be available for him. Find arava They want me to be open, find arava and they want me to catch the ball.”
Targeted 69 times this season, find arava Brady and Lloyd are missing almost as often as they’re connecting. Find arava What felt forced early in the season is now a normal part of the offense: Lloyd, find arava working mostly on the outside, find arava 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, find arava when Lloyd appeared to leap over a Smart Car moving at 35 miles an hour. Find arava Impressive, find arava but Patriots fans would prefer to see him soaring into end zones in the second half of the season, find arava when championships are decided and playoff posturing begins.
“It seems like the games are a lot bigger, find arava they mean more, find arava they’re more important coming into the second half of the season, find arava coming into November and December, find arava” Lloyd said. Find arava “Things are starting to shake out in the conferences and the divisions, find arava so you have stuff you can look forward to, find arava stuff that you can improve on.”
Michael Whitmer can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Find arava Follow him on Twitter @GlobeWhitmer.