In the situation I'm referring to, I should in fact have said too large a "percentage" of synonyms.
Getting back to titles, I don't know whether Google is looking separately at co-occurrence in titles and in other individual page elements (and in offpage elements... eg, in anchor text). I think it's likely that they are. If so, co-occurrence weighting in these elements would most likely be different than in body text.
The point I'm raising with regard to the OP's question is whether the problem is boilerplate text repetition, or whether it's keyword-synonym co-occurrence in the title. Or, it might be something else entirely. In this case, that something else might be inbound linking weakness, perhaps in conjunction with too much other similarity among the pages.
Not yet having read the patent, I'm not sure what points it makes to suggest that boilerplate in a title by itself might be problematic.