Is Brandon Lloyd the Odd Man Out?

Despite being signed to a one-year deal last month, the acquisition of Stevie Johnson, emergence of Quinton Patton and selection of Bruce Ellington could mean Brandon Lloyd may not even make the San Francisco 49ers roster.

Before the draft, the Niners only had a few weak spots, wideout included. At the time, Lloyd seemed like a decent option for a number three receiver and a solid veteran to come in and challenge Patton for playing time. However, once the Red and Gold added Johnson and Ellington, Lloyd’s future with the team was thrown into jeopardy. He’s been away from the game for over a year, and will be competing with a younger group of players, save Anquan Boldin, whose spot is guaranteed, and Kassim Osgood, who is more of a special teams threat. Those odds don’t shape up well for Lloyd.

That said, his last few seasons in the league were very solid, including 2010, where he led the NFL in receiving yards. He should also get ample opportunities to prove himself in OTAs and training camp and in preseason games. The extra playing time he’ll receive should work in his favor, but he will have to produce. The motivation to have a successful go-around in his second stop in San Francisco will also help.

Although his spot is far from assured, the 49ers suddenly have a strong receiving corps that should meet the challenges of the tough secondaries throughout the division. Brandon can only help the Niners if he makes the squad, but it will be an uphill battle.

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