First of all i know we are 2-1 right now and things certainly could have gone a lot worse thus far in the season. However, i really have some concerns with what i have seen from the offence.
Quarterbacks- Buck has really looked decent at best so far. A few good plays, but a lot of under thrown balls and INTs. Not all his fault as the receivers have had some drops.
Receivers- Meh comes to mind. Edwards looks good as usual, but the young guys have not exactly stepped up when we need a big first down catch. TJH really had a bad game against calgary. There have been some injures but that does not excuse the offence in my mind, this is the CFL, receivers come and go and other teams seem to do just fine with it.
O-LINE- Has shown some good things, but not consistent enough. Running game has looked pretty good, but second and short yardage is where we have struggled.
Running backs- No real complaints here.
Play Calling- This may be where i am most concerned. I don't know if it is Buck, the receivers, play calling, or a bit of each that has really made our offence look soo ugly, but if it does not change we can expect to lose the close ones regularly again.
Overall, yes our D and special teams have looked better thus far, but our offence looks like it has taken a step back. All three of the games we have played should have been W's but our offence continues to look terrible and keeps the other team within striking distance when the game should be over. We need to get that killer instinct on offence, or it could be another year of what ifs and close loses. No more excuses. Go Bombers!!!!!!!
Receivers.. we expected to have this:
Edwards - Carr - TJH - Watson - Poblah
as opposed to
Edwards with a minor injury - Denmark - really bad version of TJH - Watson - Hargreaves
There is a big difference there. Hopefully either TJH gets back to normal or Carr comes back soon and is still at the same level, allowing us to give Denmark some playing time instead of TJH if he doesn't improve. Edwards has been playing hurt and still looks pretty good. You can say injuries are no excuse, but there's no need to pretend. If you take two starting receivers off any team and make a third play hurt that offense is not going to look so good. Not that they have been very good, but we'll see what happens when Carr is back.
Buck has struggled big time. But it's not like we have any other choice. He's gonna have to get better though, I agree.
Play calling could use some work as well. It's not terrible but I do see room for improvement. Also, the offense needs to start finishing drives. 11 FG attempts in 3 games while only scoring 4 offensive TDs is not a good thing.
Only good thing about the offense right now is Fred Reid. Edwards and Watson have been good, but you need more than two receivers. Hargreaves showed a little bit at the end of the Calgary game, Denmark showed some good things in his CFL debut but didn't do much against Calgary. Carr is coming back so we can hope that helps. They need consistency, definitely. There's a lot of work to be done, but I do think the talent is here to get the offense going.
Not really offense related, but I'm glad to see nobody wants to get rid of Palardy. I've heard some people saying that and it's pretty stupid. I mean, of the four missed field goals we've got a 44-yarder into a big breeze, a blocked kick where nobody made any effort to prevent the Calgary player from getting through, and two where the holder came out and said the misses were his fault. Not that I would expect Jovon to say any differently, but I don't doubt it at all. He is a very good kicker and he'd make us look silly somewhere else if we ever cut him, of that I am sure.
.....Offence....not really getting untracked...reasons i see are mostly injuries...You can't deny the talent level is there but good gravey...we don't seem to able to field an offence with any continuity....Receivers coming up lame (carr, poblah,edwards) are starting to take there toll...TJH going into a bit of a sophomore jinx is not helping....When we get Buck in the groove and most of our receiving corps healthy again things could change rapidly ...I understand Poblah is now running sprints... Watson is playing lights-out and Denmark isn't all that bad..BUT we need one of our other talented guys to step-up...I just about forgot to add Hargraves..(why is it this kid gets no respect) All he did last game was catch the ball :lol: ...We need to see more of him and hope his early success spreads to the the other receivers
...I understand that Tim Brown has 'unretired' and is burning up the field...I don't know if he'll be inserted into the line-up BUT we've kept him around for a reason...I think we're about to find out soon
Two biggest differences on the receiving core is not having a big target like Carr and TJH's struggles. Mind you, one has to remember that Buck hasn't really played much with Carr, so who knows where their on field chemistry is at. Not having Poblah - meh. He showed flashes of being a great receiver in camp, but he sat around missed a chunk of camp with the leg injury. He did nothing in Hamilton before he was hurt. Its great that he's shown flashes in practice but its gameday that counts. I don't think you can say at this point that not having him in the lineup hurts the team. You may not like Hargreaves, but he's caught the ball when thrown to him this season, Poblah didn't. You can argue about change in the receiving core as an issue, but Buck's had basically the same receiving group the last 2 straight games. I think Buck has not looked good throwing the ball deep or to the sidelines so far.
I'm still not convinced it's entirely the players on the field. They have made mistakes - drops, fumbles, overthrows, underthrows. But as a whole I'm not really enamoured with the playcalling. You're trying for a field goal at the end of last game, you need 10 yards and you get a 2 yard pass. Offence hasn't shown much creativity or variety so far IMO. For a long time offensive co-ordinator in LaPo my expectations were higher than what I've seen in his tenure thus far.
QB - Buck is and remains or best option, though he doesn't seem to be at his best. Lingering arm strength issue with the elbow? Playcalling in general or altered playcalling trying to keep him upright? People were high on Elliott but he still had yet to win a game and despite all the reviews from his play vs the stamps I think he looked average and still has a ways to go to catch up to the Rays and Calvillos. That doesn't mean he can't be a great QB but losing him to injury won't make or break the bomber season. I don't really care for bringing any retreads like Pickett, Champion, etc as they don't appear to be a significant upgrade at the backup spot that much over what's already there. We might have to make do this season with what TO fans have had to endure with Lemon, but I don't think fans will argue too much if we can put up a similar 9-9 record.
It was Hargreaves' second career game with more than 40 yards receiving. I know Poblah didn't do a thing other than drop passes in Hamilton, but I would be pretty shocked if, in another two and a half games, he didn't have at least 5 catches for 52 yards. I would argue someone with Poblah's talent is a heck of a lot more of a concern for the defense, even if he hasn't really proven anything yet, than a guy who had, prior to last week, two 3-reception games and one 40-yard game in 47 games played. Don't take that as me hating Hargreaves, I really DO like Hargreaves, but he has shown a whole lot of nothing throughout his career here. Maybe he's turning a corner, that would be nice. For now, I don't see why any defense would concern themselves with Aaron Hargreaves.. whereas they have to respect a guy with Poblah's speed and talent a little bit more. Hargreaves might be turning into a capable receiver, who knows, but at this point, he doesn't create space, and I just think Poblah's speed would.
I'm not overly worried. At this time last season the offence and defence looked really good while ST struggled and we were 1-2. This season the defence is great, ST has been good and the offence will get better and we're 2-1. Plus I'm not going to worry about crap happening until it actually happens.
QB depth, wasn't great to begin with, and could get very thin very quickly.
Other than that, nobody expected us to be 3 - 0 anyways.