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Lloyd, projected - 84 catches 1020 yds

Discussion in 'RAMS - NFL TALK' started by -X-, Nov 16, 2011.

  1. -X-

    I'm the Dude, man.
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    Jun 20, 2010
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    North Carolina
    Jim Thomas
    <a class="postlink" href="http://www.stltoday.com/sports/football/professional/lloyd-is-making-an-impact-with-rams/article_41558d7d-eeab-5881-959f-337f12ef4893.html#ixzz1duBVBTxa" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;">http://www.stltoday.com/sports/football ... z1duBVBTxa</a>

    Brandon Lloyd faked to the inside as if running a post pattern into the end zone. Cleveland cornerback Joe Haden took the bait. Lloyd stopped, changed directions and headed outside toward the right corner of the end zone.

    Quarterback Sam Bradford's pass was perfect: touchdown, Rams.

    "We worked on that play at lot," Lloyd said. "And Josh (McDaniels) was calling that play a touchdown all week. 'We're gonna score on this. We're gonna score on this.' We repped it a lot to make sure that the timing was down between me and Sam, and the protection was right."

    "It's funny," Bradford said. "Because actually Josh told me (Saturday) night that if he called that play to tell Brandon to get ready to do his touchdown dance. He was that confident in it."

    If only it was always that easy. Lloyd's 7-yard grab on the first play of the second quarter gave the Rams a 7-3 lead in Cleveland. But it turned out to be the only touchdown of the day for the offensively impaired Rams — they wouldn't have beaten the Browns 13-12 without it.

    Who knows where the Rams' offense would be without Lloyd, acquired in an Oct. 17 trade with Denver. He became an integral part of the St. Louis passing game the moment he first stepped on the field at Rams Park.

    [hil]In four games with his new team, Lloyd has 21 catches for 255 yards and two touchdowns. Over a 16-game schedule, that would translate to 84 catches, 1,020 yards and eight TDs[/hil]. Lloyd saves every football from every TD catch he makes as an NFL player, so he's already added two to his pile as a Ram. Obviously, he hopes to add a few more before the season's out.

    "I feel like every ball's catchable, and I want to make a play on everything that comes my way," Lloyd said. "I'm just gonna try to look it in as best I can, and try to pluck it and tuck it and get my foot down."

    It may look like his transition to St. Louis has been easy, but that's not really the case.

    [hil]"I'm trying to be optimistic about it by downplaying the transition," Lloyd said. "But it's been difficult."[/hil]

    In ways that aren't always obvious.

    [hil]Getting used to playing in domes — I'm not used to that," Lloyd said laughing. "The lighting's different. The ball's darker. It's just a lot of little things that I'm just trying to work through. So on the outside, I look really calm and collected, but on the inside I'm freaking out."[/hil]

    Three of Lloyd's first four games with the Rams were played on the road in open-air venues. But that's about to change. The next two Rams games are at home in the Edward Jones Dome, starting with Sunday's 3:05 p.m. kickoff against Seattle.

    Lloyd was acquired for a conditional sixth-round draft pick from Denver. It becomes a fifth-rounder if Lloyd has 30 or more catches with the Rams. Since he already has 21 catches with his new team, that pick should become a fifth-rounder over the next couple of games.

    And who knows what Lloyd can accomplish once he gets in sync with Bradford?

    "Brandon came here, Sam was hurt, so we're behind in that regard," coach Steve Spagnuolo said. "But I think they're getting there. Hopefully there's more of that to come."

    [hil]As in more touchdowns. Because of Bradford's high ankle sprain, he and Lloyd have had only four practices together. In at least two of those practices, Bradford took only about half the reps.

    Before Bradford returned to action against Arizona, McDaniels joked that Bradford and Lloyd were "kind of giddy" about the prospect of playing together — like two kids heading off to the neighborhood playground.

    "The thing that's really helped me, I've just stayed really positive and been open to whatever they want out of the play," Lloyd said. "So whatever they want, I do it. And then once we know each other, then we can start making changes and start tweaking the way we interact."[/hil]

    Actually, Lloyd already has done some "tweaking," changing a red zone play with A.J. Feeley at quarterback that resulted in an 8-yard TD pass against New Orleans — his second game as a Ram.

    "I don't make a habit of doing that and I haven't done that," Lloyd said. "I thought they were going to be in a different coverage according to how they were playing me the last couple times that low in the red zone. I thought that that would work, and A.J. was comfortable making the change on the field."

    It did work, giving the Rams a 17-0 lead just before halftime in what became a 31-21 Rams victory.

    [hil]"When they did it, I was kind of like, 'What the heck did I call?' " McDaniels said. "That was just an example, I thought, of two veteran players that understand ... that area of the field. Understood the situation in the game, and then made a small adjustment. It was a minor adjustment. That could happen more and more during the course of the season."[/hil]

    Once Lloyd gets more used to his surroundings, that is. And his quarterback.

    Ness moves up

    Cornerback Nate Ness, a member of the Rams' practice squad for three weeks, has been promoted to the active roster. Ness' promotion, coupled with Monday's signing of linebacker Justin Cole from Kansas City's practice squad, fills the roster spots created by the season-ending knee injuries to cornerback Al Harris and tight end Michael Hoomanawanui.

    The Rams had four street free agents in for workouts Tuesday: cornerbacks Trumaine McBride, Kendric Burney and Chris Smith, as well as offensive tackle Thomas Welch. The Rams have a practice squad spot open now that Ness is on the 53-man roster; Burney, Smith and Welch all are practice-squad eligible.