Examining whether Ochocinco could get cut

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We noted last week that Chad Ochocinco’s role in New England wasn’t growing.  On Sunday against the Cowboys, Ocho actually took a big step back.

The $6 million receiver was only on the field for seven snaps against Dallas, according to Mike Reiss of ESPNBoston.com. One pass was thrown in Ochocinco’s direction.

On that pass, there was a miscommunication between Tom Brady and Ochocinco.  Brady thought Ocho was supposed to run a slant, and he didn’t.  Brady could be seen barking at Ochocinco after the play.

Shalise Manza Young of the Boston Globe notes that Ochocinco still needs to be told by teammates where to line up on occasion.

It’s worth wondering if Ochocinco’s time with the team could be short. The team invested a big signing bonus in Ochocinco, but at some point he may not be worth keeping around as an insurance policy.  If the team cut Ochocinco after the trading deadline, he would pass through waivers.

It’s possible that youngster Taylor Price is already a better option than Ochocinco.  And what if the Patriots add talent at the position?

The Patriots reportedly have interest in Brandon Lloyd, who would seemingly take the role Ocho was supposed to play.

Lloyd knows Josh McDaniels’ system and likely got a recommendation from his former boss.  Young writes that Bill Belichick has “always liked” Lloyd as a player.

Belichick always liked Ochocinco too.  At least until he traded for him.

UPDATE: Lloyd got dealt to the Rams. That should help Ochocinco breathe easier.

48 responses to “Examining whether Ochocinco could get cut

  1. Chad Johnson had a much better time playing football when he could just line up wherever, run whatever route he wanted to, then preen and dance if it worked out, or sulk and complain of it didn’t.

    All this precision and accountability makes him sleepy.

  2. What happened OCHO? This was supposed to be your boost in your career, instead you look like a confused rookie. Your days are numbered especially if the Pats get the trade done with Denver.

  3. Too bad for Chad, he’s a nice guy and a great athlete. Hope he catches on somewhere(outside the AFCE) should this come to fruition.

  4. Look sometimes you have to cut high draft picks and expensive FA’s…..The guy’s getting paid ergo he should produce! Ocho and Bill can still be BFF’s…taking reps from Taylor Price who I believe has some idea of what to do on the field!
    At least Price knows where to line up!

  5. Lloyd on way to Rams.

    Ochocinco on way to reality TV land.

    Taylor Price on way to increased snaps (hopefully… rooting for him as an OU alum)

  6. …and this goes to show, even as much as I like the guys personality and know he’s a good hearted person, he was a hindrance to the Bengals offense for at least the last 2 years. We all saw it but the issues were so convoluted in Cincy that addressing him as a liability was way down on the list of things to do.

  7. Chad has never been a complete receiver. Brady is a textbook QB who goes by the book and looks to where the receiver should be. Chad can’t block, run routes, or fight for the tough reception. Horrible fit for a meticulous offense. I could see Chad playing in Carolina or Pittsburgh where the QB and WR’s often have to improvise.

  8. I think you have your route names confused. You said Brady expected him to run a slant. That’s what he did run, Brady expected him to run a 7 (a post-corner).

  9. If he gets cut he’ll wind up with the Jets. Rex needs another WR and he would love nothing more than to succeed with a guy Belichick couldn’t succeed with.

  10. Brady throws 15 yd out to sideline, Ocho is looking lost at hash mark, getting tied up by CB. Brady makes that throw (to Welker, to Branch, to Gronk, to Cunningham) 2 steps before they ever even make the cut. Just as they turn to the left and stick their hands out… BAM, the ball is there. Almost every time.

    With Ochostinko, he’s at the hash mark, the ball sails to nowhere, and now it’s 3rd and 10. Thank goodness they never trust him enough to throw it to him on 3rd down.

    I saw that play yesterday and thought, “I’ve had enough of this guy. I like him, but he’s not working out.” Please move on from him, play the young guy. The last thing we want to see is that pass / play happening in the playoffs.

  11. Kaz says:
    Oct 17, 2011 11:50 AM
    Chad restructured is contract when he was traded didn’t he? He isn’t making 6 mil.

    Wrong, he signed a front loaded 6 mil up front contract! Which is very unPatriotlike.. Ocho wanted to be payed up front and the Patriots took all the risk!
    Still doesn’t know where to line up??? Save 8 gamechecks…release now. Give another receiver a shot. Use the bye to get the replacement reps…
    Time to move on!

  12. I don’t know why anybody is surprised. Throughout his career, Johnson has shown that he needs constant pampering, has a pathological need for attention, and has inability to take responsibility for his actions. So the Patriots, who demand a team-first attitude, pick him up? Why? He was declining anyway. Belichick and the front office really dropped the ball on this one.

    Oh, and this can’t be compared to the Randy Moss trade. Johnson has had a good career, but his potential in that offense paled in comparison to Moss. Johnson was never in his league.

  13. I can’t believe how uncomfortable Chad looks when he is on the field. I have to wonder if his entire career he just played mostly on instincts and didn’t worry about having to be so precise. Now with the Patriots, you can’t play like that and he is thinking about every step he has to take, and is so concerned with making mistakes, that he is just nervous and hesitant in everything he does. If that is the case, yes that is on him, but it is also on the team – the player has to do the work but the team (HC, OC, QB) has to take steps to make the player feel comfortable. The Pats don’t need much out of a third receiver, assuming Branch and Welker stay healthy, but to get where that team wants to go, they need something out of that slot. If there isn’t a better free agent or trade option, no reason to cut him just to cut him (unless he is being a distraction, which it doesn’t appear to be the case).

  14. the worst part is, it isnt his legs. He can still run. When the simplify the playbook (2 minute drill, etc) he gets open.

    He just has no grasp of the playbook, its all mental. He has lined up in the wrong spot on a few occasions this season, and has been called for false starts twice.

  15. Time to end the Eightfive experiment… enough is enough… I wish they could have kept Randy Moss…

    I am not getting my hopes up they can get Lloyd…

  16. .

    The patriots took haynesworth from the redskins. Perhaps the redskins would like to return the favor?


  17. Remember they paid a $4.5MM signing bonus, so much of that $6MM is paid already.

    Unfortunately they probably keep him around and try to take advantage of the bye week. I’m sure Ocho is at Gillette working hard right now (Right). No reason to cut him until before next weeks game at the soonest.

    Tough to keep the roster spot for a non-productive receiver that can’t play on special teams.

  18. ok in fairness to chad he didn’t exactly have an entire offseason with tom brady like most new receivers did when they came over to get acclimated and become a part of the team…i thought that pass yesterday was off target because someone came on the blitz so brady had to get rid of it faster and maybe chad was supposed to break off the route and didn’t…i still think he can be productive though if they give him some more looks

  19. Top priorities for the Patriots going into Bye week:

    1. Get Jarod Mayo healthy and bench the woeful Guyton ASAP
    2. Flush the Chad O experiment and move on
    3. Elevate the promising Taylor Price, or
    4. Bring back Randy Moss immediately
    5. Get Hayesworth fully prepared to play a lot of reps in the playoff drive. He looked awesome on his reps last night alongside Carter and Wilfork. They need that big’un full out for 75% of the reps on defense down the stretch.
    6 And finally, increase focus on the running game. It’s very good and getting better. It will save the Pats and Brady in the playoffs if they fully commit to it.

  20. FOXBORO, Mass. — Wide receiver Chad Ochocinco and defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth have officially restructured their contracts with the Patriots.

    Ochocinco will earn base salaries of $1 million in 2011, $3 million in 2012 and $3 million in 2013. He was originally set to earn $6 million in 2011 before hitting free agency, so the Patriots extended his contract for two seasons.

    Haynesworth will earn base salaries of $1.5 million in 2011 and $6.7 million in 2012. He was originally set to earn $30.9 million in base salaries through 2014, so the Patriots slashed his deal by two years.

  21. I thought they should have cut him long ago. But I’m starting to reconsider. First, he hasn’t been out looking for attention as he had been for his entire career. Second, he has not once complained about the lack of plays or passes thrown his way.

    I really believe he is trying his best to learn the playbook. At this point he is insurance and I don’t see any benifit in cutting him.

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