|Lloyd talks with us in Indy. (Ryan Wilson, CBSSports.com)|
Tim Tebow was officially named the Broncos' starting quarterback during the team's Week 6 bye. Five days before their Week 7 game against the Dolphins, they traded their best offensive weapon, wide receiver Brandon Lloyd, to the Rams. It was a confusing move at the time since Denver was 1-4 and the offense was a mess.
But whatever Lloyd provided in terms of big-play abilities (he had 77 receptions for 1,448 and 11 touchdowns in 2010 playing with Kyle Orton and for Josh McDaniels) didn't make up for possible issues that might arise from playing in a run-first, option offense.
The Denver Post's Jeff Legwold explains:
"…[T]he Lloyd deal, which ended up being a fifth-round pick in this coming April's draft in exchange for a player who went to the Pro Bowl after the 2010 season, was made because the Broncos believed the veteran, in a contract year, was going to bristle and potentially become a problem as the offense leaned more and more on the running game.
"Lloyd had not been a problem before the trade, but it was a pre-emptive strike to avoid it. Also, the Rams had several injuries at the position, and the Broncos were able to get a conditional pick — it went from a sixth-round pick to a fifth-round pick because of Lloyd's reception totals — for a player that wasn't going to stay at season's end."
Side note: CBSSports.com's Will Brinson interviewed Lloyd at the Playboy party in Indianapolis during Super Bowl week and he couldn't' have been nicer. And, yeah, Brinson asked him about Tebow.
Still, we understand the Broncos' apprehension with keeping Lloyd around. He was something of an enigma in San Francisco and his two years in Washington can kindly be described as forgettable. It wasn't until McDaniels brought him to Denver that his career took off. And that explains why Lloyd would love to be reunited with McDaniels, now the Patriots' offensive coordinator.
In late December, Lloyd told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, “I can’t even lie about that. I’m tied to McDaniels. He uses me differently than other offensive coordinators used me in my entire career. He uses me as an every-play receiver. The short game, mid-range game, gimmick passes, deep balls."
New England is in desperate need of a downfield threat but there is one tiny issue. Lloyd is represented by Tom Condon, who hasn't dealt with the Patriots since 2006, when the two sides were negotiating Ben Watson's rookie contract.
“We pretend there are 31 franchises in the NFL now and they pretend we don’t exist,” Condon once said.
Apparently, that hatchet has been buried.
“I may never like them and they may never like me, but I appreciate that they’re smart guys who usually get what they want," Condon told the Boston Herald last week." I usually get what I want, too, and what I want is what my client wants. … [Lloyd would] like to be with Josh. He’d also like to get paid. I think he’ll be a player teams will be interested in.”
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