Lions better but still fall 30-18 to spirited TiCats

August 3rd, 2009

 While the Lions continued on their losing ways there were some bright spots, despite the 30-18 loss in Hamilton.  Martell Mallett continues to run the ball well.  Sean Whyte was consistent if not outstanding.  Nice to see Grice Mullen get a TD on a run from the one yard line.  The pass protection was better than the week before, though they were still unable to consistently block 3 rushers and often got beat against 4-man pressure.  Quarterbacking was better, but still far too inconsistent and error prone to give us a reasonable chance to win.  You can't turn it over six times and expect to win.  We cannot expect to throw a ball late into triple coverage over the middle and expect success.  Better to eat that ball or throw it away.  

 The Jarius Jackson fumble was the turning point, eerily similar to his turnover in last years western final, giving the Tiger Cats the momentum they needed to deflate the Lions' collective confidence.  There's nothing I dislike more as a fan than former Lions coming back to haunt us.  Korey Banks is a hell of a DB but seems too small to play the Sam linebacker in run situations.  

 Our  defensive linemen and middle linebacker were impatient and got caught in the same gap far too often. That is due to lack of discipline, impatience and over aggressiveness, players leaving their area of responsibility to try to get at the running back as early as possible instead of playing their positions.  Javy Glatt has the heart of a lion but seems too small for the "Mike" linebacker position.  Special teams were the worst we've seen this year, pushing back possession after possession. What part of 'don't hold and don't block illegally' don't these guys understand?

 The coaches were not without error.  Letting Jamall Johnson get away after his NFL tryout has proven to be a questionable decision.  Letting Murphy and Bates go is the source of our inconsistency at run blocking and pass protection.  Wally Buono called punts from his end zone for the second week in a row, rather than making the smart decision and giving Hamilton the safety touch.  Given his statement in an interview earlier this year that he probably wanted to only coach another two years, perhaps his heart is no longer 110% focused on football and his players sense that.  Offensive coordinator Jacques Chapdelane continues his predictable play calling, without much originality.  I can tell when a running play is called virtually every time, so the opposition can too.  Two quarterback sneaks in a row?  Why not spread the formation out with five receivers if you want to sneak it.  Defensive coordinator Benevides failed to prevent a second week of being shredded along the ground.  The 4-2-6 scheme is getting us beat at the line of scrimmage too often, and players in position to make tackles are grabbing players high instead of going for the knees or waist and wrapping up.  Dave Ritchie's run defense was never exposed like ours has in the last two weeks.  Our special teams coach needs to once and for all convince the kick cover team to quit holding and blocking illegally. In short: everyone needs to act and think more professionally and work on eliminating mental mistakes.

 Next week we play the green Riders under the dome .  They are also on a two-game losing skid, after getting bleached two weeks ago and then being outlasted by the Eskimos.  Given what has transpired since mid-July, I'd take an ugly BC win any way I can get it.  

 I think this team has the talent to win, if they play disciplined, play with emotion and don't beat themselves with turnovers and stupid penalties.  They'd better, with NFL cuts just just a few weeks away.

 At least this year is interesting.  After all, who likes those 14-win seasons, anyway. 


Good luck guys.  hang in there.

Dooger from Surrey

I agree whole heartedly with this article.But what is wrong with Wally ?Is he blind ?
The team is 1-4,where is the hammer ?He didn't cut any players or fire assistant coaches.
Maybe he is living in his dream world. Wake up ,or it will be 1-5 or 1-17.

We will not be 1-17, that's just foolish.
I really do hope that our O line and linebackers get with it against Saskatchewan or that will be a very long game. I would hope by now that they would realize what they're doing right now isn't working and its time to change it up.