Patriots

Brady adjusting to Lloyd's unique skills

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Brady adjusting to Lloyd's unique skills

FOXBORO - Noted musical connoisseur Chad Ochocinco no doubt knows a few lines from Bob Marley's "Waiting in Vain."

It basically became the soundtrack to his New England tenure.

Ocho never got it, despite promise after promise that he was this close to turning the corner.

So when Tom Brady mentioned Wednesday that he's going to need every rep with his newest wide receiver, Brandon Lloyd in order for the two to get on the same page, an immediate, "Oh, boy . . . " floated through the subconscious.

Is this "Ocho, Part Dos?"

Probably not. The problem with Lloyd is a good one to have. He already gets the offense. Brady just has to adjust to his otherworldly leaping ability and tenaciousness when the ball is in the air.

"He's got a unique skill set," Brady said Wednesday. "It's gonna take some time to get used to the things he does well. We haven't had anyone quite like him."

Asked if his ability to go and get the ball is what stands out, Brady seemed to agree, saying, "He's got great ball skills and great body control. If you get it near him, he's gonna catch it."

So what's the hangup?

"It's just sometimes a matter of, it doesn't really look like he's open then -- boom -- he springs open on you," Brady explained. "Sometimes you think he's covered and you get off him and then you watch the film and you're like, 'How did he get open?' He knows what he's doing to set the guy up and he makes the move and you gotta trust that he's gonna beat the guy and he does. It's just a matter of, 'Don't let your eyes take away from what he's doing in his route' because you know he's gonna get open at some point."

If there are lingering doubts about Lloyd's comprehension, receivers coach Chad O'Shea helped snuff them when he was asked how being part of Josh McDaniels' offense is helping Lloyd's transition.

"I think it makes a big difference. I think that the transition for him has beena lot smoother for him than it would be for a player that is not accustomed andfamiliar with this system," said O'Shea. "Thats really helped in the process of him cominghere and being a productive player for us in the offseason. It really has."

Brady is one of the most precise passers in NFL history and part of the reason he's gotten there is he stays away from too many contested throws. If someone's covered, he skips on to the next guy.

But Lloyd, who high jumped 7-2 in high school, doesn't just uncover downfield and laterally. He uncovers by outjumping.

"Brandons definitely very talented when the balls in theair on contested catches," said O'Shea. "This is something that hes done in the past. Itshowed up in our offseason work now, just being very talented when the ball isthrown to make a play down the field."

Brady, who dismissed the idea that Lloyd and Randy Moss were similar players, it will take time to "understand where he likes the ball placed and where he gets open."

"We've got a lot of work ahead in training camp and we'll need to use every single practice, every rep because he can really be a big part of this offense if we get up to speed," Brady predicted.

Patriots cut ties with Cassius Marsh, sign Eric Lee to help front-seven

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Patriots cut ties with Cassius Marsh, sign Eric Lee to help front-seven

Cassius Marsh was brought to New England to help a depleted defensive end group and play in the kicking game. The Patriots wanted him badly enough that they parted with two draft picks -- a fifth and a seventh -- to acquire him in a trade with the Seahawks just before the start of the season. 

Less than three months later, they've decided to part ways with the 6-foot-4, 245-pounder. 

Marsh played in nine games for the Patriots this season, providing the team with an edge defender and someone with special-teams experience. He blocked a kick in Week 7 against the Falcons that earned him an enthusiastic attaboy from coach Bill Belichick. 

Coming off the edge, Marsh recorded one sack and 13 hurries. Against the run, he was used more sparingly, and he was one of the Patriots on the scene for Marshawn Lynch's 25-yard run in the second quarter on Sunday. He played in just two snaps in Mexico City after missing the previous week's game in Denver due to a shoulder injury. 

Without Marsh the Patriots remain thin at defensive end. In order to help bolster that spot, the corresponding move the Patriots made to fill the open spot on their 53-man roster was to sign defensive lineman Eric Lee off of the Bills practice squad. 

Lee entered the league with the Texans last season as an undrafted rookie out of South Florida. Listed at 6-foot-3, 260 pounds, Lee has bounced on and off of the Bills practice squad this season since being released by the Texans before this season.

The Patriots got a good look at Lee during joint practices last summer with the Texans at The Greenbrier in West Virginia. In the preseason game with the Texans that week, Lee played 40 snaps and according to Pro Football Focus he had two quarterback hurries. The Patriots have a history of snagging players they've practiced against, and with Lee, that trend continues

Belichick takes some heat for 'earthquake' comment

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Belichick takes some heat for 'earthquake' comment

Bill Belichick sounded less than enthused about traveling to Mexico to play a game. And his line about being "fortunate there was no volcano eruptions, earthquakes or anything else while we were down there," didn't exactly sit well with some folks south of the border.

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“Personally, I wouldn’t be in any big rush to do it again,” Belichick said on his weekly appearance on WEEI's "Dale and Holley with Keefe" show Monday. “Players did a great job dealing with all the challenges that we had to deal with. I think we’re fortunate there was no volcano eruptions, earthquakes or anything else while we were down there. I mean you have two NFL franchises in an area that I don’t know how stable the geological plates that were below us [were], but nothing happened so that was good.”

Pancho Vera of ESPN Mexico took exception to Belichick's comment on Twitter, which, translated, called out the "ignorance of the genius of the NFL." More than 200 people were killed after a quake centered near Mexico City struck in September. 

Other Twitter users said, using Belichick's reasoning, they wondered if they'd be fortunate not to be killed or wounded in a mass shooting if they were to travel to the US:

Translated, the tweets read "I also have luck in Las Vegas I was not in a shooting" and "But you are right, I apply the same when I go to the U.S. and say I was fortunate I was not in some crazy shootout."