Bomber fan here..

Greetings banjo pi uhh i mean rider fans. Don't let the name fool you, I come here meaning no harm and I promise I won't be a regular on your forum. I actually picked you guys to win the west this year and I know you respect the Winnipeg organization and fans. Anyways, I know most of you rider priders are very knowledgeable football fans and pay close attention to the league as a whole, so I want your opinion on this:

Buck Pierce has been taking a ton of heat here in Winnipeg after the first two games particularly on our online forums. Most fans are complaining about his inability to read defenses, pick up blitzes, etc. Now I know a lot of it is probably boiled over frustration from the fact we have had to endure over three seasons of the Buck roller coaster. But what do you guys think about Pierce as a QB, particularly through the first 2 games? For gods sake we are 1-1 and everyone is basically cheering for our starter to be replaced in favor of Justin Goltz. Now I know you guys have a reputation for being hard on QB's, but do you think the criticism is warranted? Obviously Pierce is not the long term guy but do you think he is good enough to win? Or is he no longer starting QB material?

Responses are much appreciated because I need a different opinion on this other than the doom and gloom outlook over on our site.

Your posts are always welcome here, and yes, the Bombers have an amazing fan base that I think most of us respect very highly.

Buck, IMO, is a great QB. When you look back at 2010, Buck and the Bomber O came out swinging, and honestly looked near impossible to stop, especially in combination with a stellar defense. Unfortunately he took some nasty hits, and historically has not been the QB to take the easy way down or out.

Now, this year he has clearly accepted that he needs to change some things. I mean, best shape of his career, and he fully admits he needs to change. He seems to be embracing these changes by sliding feet first, and has actually finally started to throw some away! his leaner frame also seems to be avoiding some hits.

So far this season, when Buck has had protection (big concern there), he has looked good. He is not locking in, is stepping up in the pocket, cycling his targets, and stepping out of the pocket when need be. Yes, he has shown some rust, but he has a like 600 passes in the previous 2.5 seasons! Give him some time, he is a good QB. The biggest concerns with Buck are:
A) has the damage already been done? - time will tell
B) will he revert to holding the ball and trying to do too much in crunch time (only saw it once in 2 games, that is great)
C) does he have the line (I am not so sure on this one)
D) Will they maintain a strong running presence, even when at times it struggles (week 1 NO, week 2 YES)

I personally believe Buck has potential to lead a team, and that his team looks to him as a leader because he never quits...but this is do or die for him, as he is now a 9 year pro. People are just getting sick of a QB who is always out, and I can not blame them, but the difference this season is that Buck is putting some of that on himself and trying to do something about it. He has some amazing guys to throw to, he is an relatively accurate QB, he can throw deep as well as underneath. Re-evaluate this question after week 5.

All that said, would Buck be in my top 3 choices at QB...no, but that is heavily biased from his injury history.

He's good and he plays with a lot of heart. But he is made of glass. If he wasnt getting injured all the time, I don't think you'd be hearing all of the criticism. It's as simple as that in my view.

I see a few areas from where the bomber fans are building up their frustration with Buck:

  • he is made of glass. He has the heart of a lion, but the body of a black fly. He is tenatious, but one well-placed 'swat', and he's done

  • he needs to listen!. The Bombers were all over the papers before the season started on how Crowton had re-worked the play book to operate the defence more along the style of the Als under Trestman: keep the QB in the pocket, have your front 5 protect him at all costs, and give him time to get the ball down field. So, what does Buck do? The VERY FIRST offensive play of the year, he RUNS!!!! Hard for the hogs to protect a running target.

  • he needs to accept his limitations and work within them. As I mentioned previously, there is no denying he is a warrior. But he needs to understand that although he may THINK he can do everything, his resume proves that his BODY can't deliver what his mind says it can do. The sooner he comes to that realization, the better off he will be. Nobody wants to see him carted off the field.

Because of all the above, other teams will keep bringing on the pressure to knock him down. If he stays protected and works within the system developed for him, he could have a pretty good year (sorry, but watching how he makes his decisions on the field, and his problems in making various reads on the fly, I don't see him as one of the top 5 QBs in the league, so 'pretty good' year is the best any one can reasonably hope for). If he keeps thinking he can carry the team on his shoulder and 'sacrifice the body for the benefit of the team', his season will soon be over, as may very well be his career.

Lastly, never forget: every fan's 'favourite' QB is never the guy presently under centre, but is always the 'next' QB!

There are a lot of people out there who just think they sound cool when they say that someone sucks, so they see some little weakness to say that someone sucks or is a bum.

As for Buck, I've always really liked him. I think his skills as a QB are underrated. I also think that if it weren't for a kid named Lulay arriving on the scene he'd still be the starter in BC throwing for 4 and 5 thousand yards a year and winning 11 or 12 games and winning a ring. Don't know if he'd be MOP but he'd be a successful QB on a successful team.

Injuries with him have always been a concern. Some of it is just bad luck or being hung out to dry on a missed block (a la Butler hit a couple years ago). Some of them is Buck having big balls to do anything to make a play which on one hand I greatly admire, but on the other you wonder if it's the best thing in the long run for the team and his career. And then there was his elbow dislocation a few years back that looked so soft that you wonder how the hell the guy even stays together.

So yea, I think it's a combination of things, but all in all I like the guy. He's underrated. Keep him upright, he'll be fine - which is the same thing everyone says about AC and Ray.

Buck Pierce will never stay upright; not the way he plays. Do not put him in the same sentence with AC and Ray - he is a good QB but even at the best of times he not close to those 2 guys lol.

I made no comparison of Pierce's abilities to AC or Ray.

IMO, Buck could have been a HOF QB if he could stay healthy... I believe it would be fair to compare him to Dunigan...I believe has that type of potential, especially with a similiar style of play... if Pierce was more durable, he could have been even better than Matt... I think Winnipeg would do well to develop a solid back-up should the need arise when BP gets injured... its not a question of if, but when...

He’s a good QB but to take the next step requires consistency, which requires him to stay healthy which he hasn’t shown he can do throughout his career. If Pierce stays healthy the entire season, Winnipeg probably makes the playoffs, might even have a home playoff game. If Pierce goes down, it’s a roll of the dice. It’s pretty rare to see a Ricky Ray type player come off the bench and immediately have success, so the odds of success go down exponentially.

As stunning as it is...the Bombers are the best looking team in the East at the moment!

The season is young...the Riders started out amazing last season as well (but they just seem different...stronger as the game progresses). It is hard to say how the East will develop. Hamilton needs to show what they can or can not do. we will see if the Als turn it around. I don't think Toronto has it...2 decent guys in the secondary, a good MLB and average DL. It will be interesting to see where everyone sits in week 5 or 6.

Buck didn't look so good against Hamilton today.

Sure didn't, against probably one of the weaker looking defenses thus far anyways.

15/26 for 186 yards and no TDs. I must say, not great looking numbers through 3 games.

T'is true, but I don't think Buck is their biggest problem. If I were a fan of theirs (which, thankfully, I am not :lol: ), I'd be frying other fish.

None of the abs looked good today. Buck was the best of them though didn't put up any points at qb.