The whirlwind week for the Roughriders is well underway as the team transitions from their intra-squad scrimmage on Saturday in Saskatoon, to a move to Regina on Sunday, to a game on Tuesday, to a flight to Vancouver on Thursday before their pre-season finale on Friday and then back home for cut down day on Saturday.
With mostly players on tryout playing, not sure what I learned about the Riders. 5 turnovers by Riders, 3 by Bombers. Overall a messy game. There was some good things as noted but I still don't know if the Riders have a run game. Have to see what happens in game 2. The Bombers? Their passing was 13/26. And kicking, the area I find concerning, went from 34.3 net punting in game 1 to 25.8 net yards in game 2 despite some stellar punt averages. So there's issues. Won't know much about them until they take the bubble wrap off Collaros. Can understand the concerns but how much rust will be there game 1? Ready for the real season to begin.
Zack Collaros started a bit slowly last season but finally shook all the rust off by game 4 which is one of the reasons we lost to the Argonauts in game 3. The other reason we lost that game had everything to do with Nick Arbuckle's ability to move around in the pocket and frustrate our pass rushers. Ryan Dinwiddie's game plan worked to perfection that day. With Zack completing only 54% of his passes for only 204 yds and in an interception we had no answer to Arbuckle's best 2021 effort (72% completion rate for over 300 yards and no interceptions).
I'm hoping that this year Zack gets his head into the game a bit sooner than week 4. I'm not too worried about our opening back to back games against Ottawa but Game 3 is against Hamilton and they really want to beat us bad. We'll have to be at our best.
Hey Maaax - the Bombers play the double EE in week seven. It's not definitive yet, but Arbuckle likely has the nod to start for Edmonton. I think this will be a much more competitive chess match between these two teams (unlike last year's train wreck - so embarrassing to watch Edmonton).
Winnipeg just toyed with the Elks - hoping for a different outcome - and more entertaining game! Cheers!
Riders haven't won a pre season game since 2014. It's a wonder how anyone has ever made this team. Mind you, they haven't won a cup in there either, so I guess Fridays game in B.C. may shed some light on their chances for a home win in the GC this year.
I think you're right. This year we can't take the double EE too lightly, especially with Arbuckle behind centre now. In 2021 it was hard to get up for our games against Edmonton. The outcome was never in doubt. Now I'm actually looking forward to Week 7.
Ottawa is better this year & tends to catch teams early. Won their 1st game in 2021 in a 3 win season. won their 1st game, tied their 2nd in 2019 in a 3 win season. Also won 2 of 1st 3 in 2018, tied 1st game in 2017. Won 1st 2 in 2016 & in 2015. So, whatever their record, whatever the reason, their last 6 years the REDBLACKS are undefeated in season openers. Wouldn't pay to treat them lightly.
Farhan Lalji reports that at this time attendance for the pre-season match with Calgary @ Commonwealth sits @ 30,000 for the "Stand with Ukraine" match, another brainchild of Victor Cui.
The Riders haven't been filling Mosaic consistently since the first year the stadium opened I'm told. I agree with you, tickets should have been cheaper, especially if you're sitting down almost all your starters & expecting to pay full dollar. Or, do some promotion. It's been stated in the media before that the Riders expect fans to come without putting a lot of effort into promoting. IMO, if that's true, that time has come & gone.