Dunk in Defence of the Defence

[url=http://www.cfl.ca/article/dunk-injuries-have-been-a-huge-factor-in-ticats-secondary]http://www.cfl.ca/article/dunk-injuries ... -secondary[/url]

Dunk is excellent. Reminds me of a younger Chris Schultz, a football mind that can express his analyses and insights exceedingly well.

I don't read him enough.

Thanks for the link!

About time someone acknowledged the impact injuries to our starting defensive line-up has had on the team's performance. Granted, the lack of pressure by the d-line makes the weakened secondary look even worse, but it's not like the team (I.e. Obie) could have predicted the injuries ahead of time and signed a bunch of top-rated DBs to be backups in case it happened. Right?

http://forums.ticats.ca/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=76709&start=90#p1360041

I’ve been saying that all along but nobody listens to me.

Some of us do. :slight_smile:

The way I look at it, our defence is a sieve, allowing more points than any other team. But the reasons (not excuses) are a combination of an ineffective d-line and a number of key injuries, with the d-line being the more critical factor. I'm hoping that the recent additions will start to make a positive difference in the next few weeks.

I do agree the d-line is a major issue. People are generally overlooking the fact we can't have "consistency" if we haven't had the same guys playing the same positions for more than 2 games the whole season. I'm too lazy to look at the depth chart, but there has been a whole lot of movement in almost every position on D. Coaching is a big issue as far as I'm concerned.

Those are just excuses. Other teams have key injuries also but manage to overcome the adversity and find ways to win. If the team is managed and coached correctly then they have depth at every position. Players that can fill in and excel so that the team hardly skips a beat. Plus having Bo Smith out of the lineup may actually even help our defense. :cowboy:

Yeah, I'm not so sure about the "coaching is the issue" angle that most have taken with regard to the Defence. It seems to me that with the new coaching this year, they came into the team by saying "this is how we are going to run our program" and they have done so. The coaching staff did not have the luxury of handpicking the players they were going to play in the system nor did they have more than a few months prior to pre-season to draft, pick, or trade for the players they want/like. They inherited another coach's players who coached a different style of program. To me, the devil is in the details of the bigger picture. For example, coach Cortez takes on the triple role of coaching and player decisions. He also signs for 4 years. To me that means the conversations prior to his hiring went something like:

TEAM - Hey George, wanna coach for us?

CORTEZ - I would love to, however, I am smart enough to know what goes into building a winning program so I am not willing to take this average team and be expected to make the Grey Cup in one year. From what I see, the team does not have the talent or players across the board to build a winning franchise. I want to build a stable, strong team with depth and a winning culture. How can I do this without the power to evaluate and plan if I only get two years and no power to make decisions? Heck, I'm going to need at least 10 games to evaluate the players that you already have here who I (with the help of Obie and others) think can make the team I will be trying to develop. So, if you want me, those are the terms.

TEAM - That's what we were hoping you would say. Welcome aboard.

Hence, one possible rational for the "issues" with the Defence that lead many to say "fire the coaches!!!!"

I don't think so. Cortez had dozens of players to evaluate at training camp and several players from last year have moved on. This is now Cortez's team and he has to take most of the responsibility for who is on the field. If he is as you say "smart enough to know what goes into building a winning program", well then he hasn't started off very well.

Dozens of players to evaluate... None of which he chose, knew or had played in his schemes before. That is part of my point. As for his knowing what to do to build a winning team, only time will tell, but his resume is impressive.

8) Well Cortez sure knew Henry Burris, and he certinly has played in Cortez's schemes before !!!
  In retrospect, that is probably the main reason that the Cats traded to get Burris in Hamilton.
  That probably went a long way in convincing Cortez to sign here.

Which teams? Which teams have had as many injuries in a single key area as the Ticats?

And I'm guessing that Hinds was forced back into the lineup earlier than he otherwise would have as a result of the injuries to Smith and Young, and the move of Collins to SAM replacing Knowlton, and now his injury.

Most teams. The first two teams I randomly checked have current articles on that very subject of dealing with injuries. Like I said before. It's about assembling team depth. Hell, most of our first stringers aren't even that great, never mind the backups. Calvillo has some of his best receivers out but it's not really affecting him. Here's some links to read:

[url=http://www.esks.com/article/eskimos-weathering-early-injury-storm]http://www.esks.com/article/eskimos-wea ... jury-storm[/url] [url=http://www.montrealgazette.com/sports/Popp+likes+chances/7196500/story.html]http://www.montrealgazette.com/sports/P ... story.html[/url]

I thought it said, "Duck, if you defend this defence!"

According to the first article, Edmonton has lost 35 man games from 11 starters at various positions. And the three players mentioned in the Montreal article? All within the last three weeks. The three players I mentioned (Smith, Young, Knowlton) have been on IR for a total of 18 games. That doesn't include the rest of the starters who have been injured at various times. And Montreal is whining about missing their runningback for a couple of games? Give me break. That's a position that most teams have a lot of depth - just look at the number of backs we have on the IR right now, and we seem to be ok.

Sorry, I ask again, which teams have been hit with injuries as badly in a single key position as the Ticats?

It is bizzare seeing Rey running around in coverage while the enemy is feasting where he should be, zone coverage in the red, and abandoning the blitz when it has some success.
I think Creehan believes in his system & play calling more than his players.

...and once again. Good teams with depth and proper coaching find ways to win. Today's dominating victory over Edmonton clearly demonstrated this and did not include Smith, Young or Knowlton. Nor were they needed or missed because their replacements filled in quite admirably.