Well, last night's win against the now Paul LaPolice-less Bombers (See another post for more on the firing) wasn't exactly an oil painting. But as they say, a win is a win.
The Lions offense finally got hot late in the second quarter and led by ten at the half. After keeping opposition offenses out of our end zone for 247 minutes the Lions finally surrendered a third quarter TD to Joey Elliot and the Bomber offence. Again in the second half Lions offense seemed to lose their momentum and didn't really get any back until late in the fourth quarter, when Lulay engineered a solid drive, ending with an Andrew Harris TD from about five yards out. Joey Elliot and the Bombers O found a way to march the ball down and kick a field goal against what looked like a tired BC defence. But when it mattered most with just 27 seconds left to play, Travis Lulay hit Jackson, Simon and Gore to set up the winning field goal by a seemingly unflappable Paul McCallum.
They say winning masks problems in some facets of a teams play. After their first three wins putting up 33, 39 and 34 (an average of 35.5 points) the Lions have underachieved somewhat. In their last three wins, putting up 18, 24 and 20 points (average of 20.7). It was the solid D and improved special teams that kept the opposition off balance long enough for the offense to outscore the Argos, Riders and Bombers. Watching on TV is it hard to see why the offense has dropped its production lately, but pass protection has been inconsistent and Travis Lulay has seemed to struggle at times against some of the more sophisticated zone defences he's seen lately from the Argos, Riders and Bombers. Angus Reid going down with a leg injury didn't help the BC offensive line any and may explain the protection problems against the Bombers. I also thought Dean Valli was struggling at times to deal with the inside speed of the Bombers' pass rush and Harris missed a block or two as well and at times Archibald struggled against the speedy ends of the Bombers.
Although the streak was broken it is still a remarkable achievement for Rich Stubler's D, who were suddenly down a man after Reddick announced he had a hip problem and couldn't go about an hour before game time last Saturday. I thought Jason Arakqi filled in very well for Reddick and the secondary played another strong game, despite having the touchdown streak in the third quarter and giving up a couple long passes late in the fourth quarter. On one of them it looked to me like Marsh was focussed on picking off the ball rather than just knock it down. Despite a few mistakes the D was very strong and must have had four or five two and outs and a couple other drives that were held to four to six plays.
After the game coach Benevides was saying the team was tired after a short week of preparation and the travel to the 'Peg. So I expect them to give the guys a day off, maybe two, before getting ready for AC and the Alouettes next Friday. I look for the Leos D and special teams to give another big effort and I think the offense should do well against Montreal, who have yielded a whopping 242 points in eight games , an average of 30.3 per game. Compare that to the Lions' stingy 141 points, just 17.5.
And what was the score the last time the Leos played Montreal, on the last week of the 2011 season? 43-1 for the guys in orange and white! Go Leos!
Dooger in Surrey :cowboy: