Lloyd succinct when asked about learning curve

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Lloyd succinct when asked about learning curve

FOXBORO -- The shortest answers from Brandon Lloyd were his most telling.

Speaking with media after a Patriots OTA practice Thursday morning, the team's most intriguing free agent acquisition was asked if he'll have difficulty picking up the Patriots offensive system.

"No," said Lloyd, letting eye contact linger and his two-letter answer hang in the air.

Later, when asked if he'd ever been on a team with so many weapons on it, Lloyd was again succinct.

"No."

The often loquacious Lloyd could have emptied a bag of words to answer both questions, but his brevity is appreciated.

Especially in the wake of listening to Chad Ochocinco's bleatings last year about how hard the offense was, the time it took to get it down and how close he was to playing freely and without thinking.

Because although the Patriots offensive arsenal is loaded, the fact Lloyd gets the offense and brings a skill set that was missing from the 2011 Patriots makes New England better now -- on paper -- than it was last year.

Lloyd's experience working with Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels in 2010 and 2011 makes his transition simple on the Xs and Os end. It's the other elements of getting acclimated that will be a process.

"(I'm) plugging away," said Lloyd. "Getting into the OTAs and understanding the process and the way the plays are called and run and the execution of the workouts and the scheduling. It's been a change and I'm excited to see how everything works out."

Asked about Tom Brady, Lloyd said he's learned that, "He's good. He's good from far away and he's good up close."

And the differences he's seeing in the team-wide atmosphere?

"The coaching, the way that the message is delivered and the way that the coaches coach and the players all fall in line," said Lloyd. "Its been a good experience so far."

With the Patriots' first preseason game looming less than 90 days away, the urgency to figure out the receiving pecking order is on.

Yeah, not really. This whole thing will take time to sort itself out. And despite the fact there are a bunch of names people recognize -- Stallworth, Gaffney, Ochocinco among them -- those players need to create their roles on this team.

"There are a lot of talented pass catchers not only that are on this team and played last year but that are new to the team and were successful at previous stops," said Lloyd. "Theres a lot of talent there."

Even though it's early, Lloyd said, the anticipation and excitement in the group of targets is there.

"Everybody has been communicating and excited. However this pans out, however the lineup falls, its going to be a talented group of players."

Enough said.

Curran: McDaniels staying with Pats shouldn't be a shocker

Curran: McDaniels staying with Pats shouldn't be a shocker

For weeks the speculation regarding Josh McDaniels wasn't a matter of "if" but "when."

But while national media had McDaniels signed, sealed and delivered to multiple landing spots, the proposition that he'd leave at all was never a likelihood. 

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The Rams weren't attractive to him from the outset. Jacksonville didn't excite him, either. And on Monday, he passed on the 49ers opportunity. 

The lure of a blank slate in San Fran at quarterback and GM didn't outpace the uncertainty of going cross-country to work for a seemingly dysfunctional franchise that's cycled rapidly through coaches and has an unrealistic sense that it's a long, long way removed from its glory days, the only remnant remaining from that being perhaps the logo on the helmet. 

With four kids and a job McDaniels considers one of the 10 best on coaching -- head man or no -- he will stay on as the Patriots' offensive coordinator.

"I was really impressed with (Niners owner) Jed York and (team executive) Paraag Marathe . . . and the people that came from the 49ers organization," McDaniels said on a conference call this morning. "They did a great job with their presentation. Humbled to be included in that process. At this time it's just best for my family and myself to remain here in New England and focus on this year's playoffs and finish out the year however it turns out."

The same faulty speculative reasoning that had McDaniels as good as gone from the Patriots will move on undeterred today and surmise that McDaniels is staying with the Patriots because he knows, or has been promised, that he'll receive the head coaching job when Bill Belichick steps aside. 

While the Kraft family certainly thinks highly of McDaniels and that could come to pass, anyone tapping their foot and checking their watch waiting for Belichick to step down is in for a long wait. He's showing no signs of wrapping it up and, while I haven't been told directly McDaniels isn't the automatic successor, he wouldn't be taking interviews at all if he were assured that. 

What will be interesting to see is whether interest remains high in him for other jobs or the perception that he's never going to leave means teams don't bother to ask. San Fran obviously had its heart set on McDaniels. Even though Nick Caserio passed on the chance to interview with the Niners for their open GM job, the team did talk to Louis Riddick about the spot. He and McDaniels have high regard for each other. 

Between McDaniels, Caserio and defensive coordinator Matt Patricia, the people closest to Belichick on the coaching flow chart all had chances to go somewhere else and all passed on the chance. It's another example of not why the Patriots are good but why they remain good. Stability. 
 

McDaniels: 'Best for my family and myself' to remain with Patriots

McDaniels: 'Best for my family and myself' to remain with Patriots

Josh McDaniels will be staying put in New England, he said on Monday, because that's what's best for him and his family at this point in time. 

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The Patriots offensive coordinator was a front-runner for the open head-coaching job in San Francisco but has removed his name from consideration.

"I was really impressed with [Niners owner and CEO] Jed York and [Chief Strategy Officer and EVP of Football Operations] Praag [Marathe] and [Director of Football Administration and Analytics] Brian [Hampton] and the people that came from the 49ers organization. They did a great job with their presentation. Again, humbled to be included in that process.

"At this time it's just best for my family and myself to remain here in New England and focus on this year's playoffs and finish out the year however it turns out."

Next season will be McDaniels' sixth full season back with the Patriots since returning during the playoffs of the 2011 season.

"I've always said how grateful I am to have this opportunity to work here with Mr. Kraft and his family, and coach under Bill with a lot of great guys on our staff, and to have the privilege to get to work with the players that we work with each day," McDaniels said. "It's a great opportunity. I'm very thankful to be here, and very much looking forward to this week against Pittsburgh."