Aaron Hernandez, Odin Lloyd's Unlikely Friendship That Allegedly Led to Murder


A 2007 Gainesville, Fla., police report, which surfaced three weeks ago, showed Hernandez had an altercation at a Gainesville restaurant called The Swamp. It said the then-college freshman had gotten into a fight with the manager over two drinks Hernandez maintained he hadn't ordered. According to the report, his college teammate Tim Tebow stepped in and offered to pay for the drinks. Instead, according to authorities, Hernandez punched the restaurant manager so hard that his ear drum burst. Hernandez was never charged with assault.

"He could have been kicked off the [University of Florida] team but he wasn't," said former NFL agent Josh Luchs.

Growing up in Boston, Odin Lloyd also excelled at football and was "very talented," according to his high school football coach Mike Branch, but didn't get special treatment.

"Definitely recruited, but he was a class clown type," Branch said. "If [he] put a little more effort into the books, honestly, I think the sky was the limit."

Branch said Lloyd didn't apply himself in school and that he "liked the ladies." He never went to college, Branch said, and drifted into semi-pro football. Lloyd also had odd jobs, including his most recent one as a landscaper.

Lloyd's close friend and Bandits teammate Darryl Hodge said Lloyd never really gave up his dreams of playing in the NFL, but knew he had to find a way to support himself.

"It's more that you become realistic with yourself like, 'hey that dream is a good dream,' but at the end of the day you still have to take care of everyday life," Hodge said. "You still have to wake up and go to your 9 to 5."

Meanwhile at Florida, Hernandez was a shining star on the field with 111 receptions and 12 touchdowns, but off the field there were rumors about the football player's intense behavior.

The Wall Street Journal obtained a copy of one of Hernandez's personality tests, given by a North Carolina scouting service that prepared psychological profiles of players for NFL teams before the Patriots picked Hernandez up in the fourth round of the 2010 NFL Draft. It said Hernandez enjoyed "living on the edge of acceptable behavior" and cautioned that he could become "a problem" for his team. It also said Hernandez received the lowest possible score, a 1 out of 10, in the "social maturity" category.

ESPN's Mike Reiss said Hernandez's spotted past "significantly" impacted his NFL draft stock.

"This was a player that most would agree had first round talent, maybe second round talent, [but] slipped to the fourth round because of off-field [behavior]," Reiss said. "There were some questions, whether it was with potential drug use, questions about players, of other people he might have been hanging around at the time. This was a player who came with some more risk."

But in the end, Hernandez was chosen by the New England Patriots, and soon moved in with the beautiful Jenkins, whom he had met in high school. That's how friends say Hernandez and Lloyd met, because Lloyd was dating Jenkins' sister.

"[If] they're dating sisters, you would casually see each other," Hodge said. "If you had a barbeque, had a housewarming, whatever the case may be, your family is having a cookout, you are going to see each other on the pass-me-by. So that's what we thought it was."

No matter how casually it started, and no matter how unlikely, friends say Lloyd and Hernandez hung out even when the women weren't around.

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