Prior to last night, I was quite frustrated by our coaching, particularly the game plan.
Last night, the offensive line plays well, and they spring Josh Ranek loose. When Josh wasn’t running for big gains, he was maing big plays catching the ball out of the back field. All this against the best run defense in the league, and one of the best defenses in the league.
Last night, the defense sends a number of different blitz packages on first and second down, and they actually got to the QB. Was an imposter running the defense? With Milt Stegal out, the defense had to shut down Glenn and Roberts. After they took care of Glenn, and the offense scored some points, Roberts was a non-factor.
I can’t say anything great about the special teams, as they were not special, but what they did do is not lose the game. Often doing this is enough.
I hope this is a trend that will continue.
Notes to coaches for next week: Toronto can be run against if you can keep the linbackers off the running (see the BC game for examples). Toronto has no run attack, pressue the QB again as given time they will get the ball to some great receivers. Toronto’s special teams are deadly, kick the ball high not deep to limit their returners to big gains, put two guys back when Toronto is pinned deep, and keep working on blocking to give Holmes somewhere to run.
My worry has been that our coaching staffs over the last few years haven't been effective in developing consistency in establishing an identity in what the Hamilton Tiger-Cats do on offense, defence, and special teams. i would argue the most glaring example of this is our defence, almost from week to week, quarter to quarter.
It is one thing to try to "confuse" the other QB. It's another to confuse yourself out of maximizing your roster's talents and playing timid football.
I am not a "blitz every down" proponent by any means. I do believe it is essential to bring pressure through a mix of line stunts, delayed blitizes, zone blitzing, etc. from time to time and disguise what you are doing. Reed's penchant for 3-line rushes and vanilla coverages at the worst times makes me tear my hair out.
It is really important for us to take last night's effort and continue to hone the pressure aspect of our game so that we aren't left playing zone all night against the Allens and Calvillos of the league.
Tough football means delivering punishment. I really like the way we went at the Bombers last night...it can set a tone for the remainder of the season if the right lessons are learned from it.
Oski Wee Wee,
I am happy the team as a whole...both players and coaches...stepped it up. Now if we can find some consistancy and keep playing well we just may salvage something out of this season yet.
Go Cats Go!!!