Offense 2010

Okay, with training camp in the not-so-distant future, I thought it would be fun to speculate about what we can expect from Trestman and Milanovich's offense in 2010. Granted, I don't expect the base packages to change, but with almost the entire team returning on offense, we have a chance to introduce new wrinkles, packages, sets, and looks into our attack to make AC & co. even more effective.

So the question I have for y'all is: What do you think we should do to get better?

As a general area of improvement, I would target red-zone efficiency. At times last season, we seemed to lapse into a rut where we'd try to punch the ball in using underneath patterns that required receivers to battle their way in after making the catch. Attacking the zone itself should be a higher priority.

With the Santiago signing, one wonders if Trestman is considering using a tight end as more than an extra blocker in short-yardage situations. I'm intrigued by the move and certainly feel that a tight end in our five-receiver sets would give us more options than someone like Deslauriers who at this point is really nothing more than a decoy, and an obvious decoy at that.

I'd also like to see Kerry Carter more involved in the short passing game. The man has very underrated hands for a fullback and runs routes like a tight end.

Finally, I will repeat my plea for more of a sustained running game in the first half. Yes, I know Avon piled up a lot of yardage, but a good chunk of it came in the fourth quarter of games in which we were ahead by a comfortable margin and just needed to run the clock down on the ground. While I understand that we are essentially a pass-first team, I remain mystified by Trestman's reluctance to run the ball on the opening series of most games. In our Canada Day season opener against Calgary, we put together one of the most dominant drives I've ever seen to open the game, utilizing a perfect mix of running plays, quick screens, and passes. However, for the rest of the season, we elected to forgo the run almost entirely on opening series, which became progressively less effective as the year wore on.

I thought those red-zone pass patterns had recievers running both in and out of the end zone, and Calvillo went to whoever was open. If more passes went to the guys underneath, it was a matter of circumstance, rather than design. Then again, I only got to see four Als games live, last season, so I can't say I'm well-versed on their overall passing attack.
Overall, I agree with what you said...particularly about utilizing Carter out of the backfield, more. As for the running game, I've come to the conclusion that CFL teams live and die by the pass, and that running plays are there, for the most part, to keep the defence unbalanced.

I don't disagree with what's been said, I'll just add the following:

I'd like to see more of Hawkins, used in the role that Thomas Haskins used to perform. . . that can be very confusing for a defence, never knowing where the guy is coming from. . .

Oh and d&p. . . about Deslauriers. . . isn't "obvious decoy" a bit of an oxymoron?

I'd like to see our QB's run for a total of 1000 yards :slight_smile:

I'd like to see a little more straight upfield run blocking opportunities hopefully with Woodruff at the left tackle position.

More confident Calvillo in the red zone (like he was in the fourth quarter of the GC)

I'd like to see our young QB's get "some" opportunities to play and measure their progress.

I'ld like to see Duval calm down in clutch situations. What he did in the GC was like his senior bowl game.. he's paid top CFL dollars and he does not even have to compete for his job, he needs to figure out what is playing with his mind during important games or in high pressure situations.

I'm hoping we find 3 fine players to replace the 3 fine starters we lost.

And Jim to sign a great contract for himself and build a wonderful new house around a real good school for the six kids.

I know you asked about offense but that's my bucket list :slight_smile:

I meant Woodruff at left guard.

Can't disagree with anything on that list, particularly the north-south run emphasis. I know with a scatback like Cobourne the tendency is to run him east-west on counters and draws, but sometimes you just need to hit the hole right in front of you with authority.

As for Duval, he should be on extremely thin ice this season, for all the reasons you mentioned and because his nightmarishly bad Grey Cup performance almost cost us a championship. If he can't improve in big-game situations, he's not worth the import spot, and we should cut him, Ashley Smith or no Ashley Smith.

Well, I’m probably exaggerating. It’s not like they never attacked the end zone. But it felt to me like they went through a prolonged period in the middle third of the season where they were trying to dink and dunk their way in. Opposing defenses knew it, took away the short routes, and kept us from six points. What Calvillo did in the East Division final was a lot more of what I wanted. He went after the play that was there, regardless of whether the receiver was in or out of the end zone.

With guys like Richardson, Watkins, and (in certain cases) Green, we shouldn’t be afraid of throwing the ball up and letting the receiver make a play. I know Trestman is a systems nut and it’s such an integral part of what makes our offense great, but sometimes you have to give your players a chance to be athletes.

Overall, I agree with what you said...particularly about utilizing Carter out of the backfield, more. As for the running game, I've come to the conclusion that CFL teams live and die by the pass, and that running plays are there, for the most part, to keep the defence unbalanced.
I really liked what I saw from Carter as a short-range receiver last season. The guy has way better hands than your average fullback, and he's built more like a running back than a big, bruiser who's only good for short-yardage runs. He also knows how to fight for extra YAC. You flare both him and Cobourne out of the backfield and suddenly you have two extra receivers on passing plays, but receivers who can check-release after taking on key blocks as the ball is snapped.

Brian Bratton was a playmaker last year...

Indeed. In the East Division final, his TD catch was just robbery on an underthrown AC ball that by rights should have been a Lions pick. Bratton came back to the ball on his corner route, jumped up, and beat a DB of equal size to come down with the catch and the major.

Found this tantalizing bit from a Herb story:

[i]With about 30 per cent of the playbook having changed, by Calvillo's estimation, he's curious to see how much of it can be executed, although the gameplan obviously has been condensed with only two weeks of workouts behind the team.

"Now we get the opportunity to get on the field and start building the kind of team we hope for," he said. "You want to be productive, since we're in the third year of this system."[/i]

Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/sports/L ... z0rGHJEKhz

I am dying to see what has changed! Among many things, I admire Trestman and Milanovich for not standing still and resting on their laurels, instead finding new ways to push this offense.

Another interesting tidbit from the article: there is apparently a battle going on at weak-side linebacker. Could Guzman be in the process of supplanting Ferri?

So the question I have for y'all is: What do you think we should do to get better?
1. Utiliser plus de réservistes durant la partie. Cela permet de reposer les réguliers. La saison est longue, et les Alouettes ont suffisamment de talent pour le faire.
  1. Travailler le jeu défensif contre la longue passe. L'an dernier, c'était la principale faiblesse de l'équipe. Lorsque les autres équipes s'en sont rendu compte, elles se sont mises à avoir plus de succès contre notre défense.

  2. Trouver ou former un remplaçant crédible pour Larry Taylor. Taylor a gagné plus de 1 900 verges sur les retours de bottés en 2009. C'est souvent grâce à lui que l'équipe a pu marquer des points, bénéficiant d'une bonne position sur le terrain dès le départ.

As a general area of improvement, I would target red-zone efficiency.
1. Ce sont plutôt les autres équipes qui doivent s'élever au niveau des Alouettes. Cela dit, en utilisant plus souvent des forces fraîches même dans la zone payante, les chances de réussite seraient améliorées. On l'a vu l'an dernier avec les touchés de Giffin et Whitaker.
With the Santiago signing, one wonders if Trestman is considering using a tight end as more than an extra blocker in short-yardage situations. I'm intrigued by the move and certainly feel that a tight end in our five-receiver sets would give us more options than someone like Deslauriers who at this point is really nothing more than a decoy, and an obvious decoy at that.
1. C'est de la foutaise. L'an dernier, Deslauriers a été blessé pendant de nombreuses parties. On ne sait pas ce que Santiago va donner dans la LCF. Il se peut qu'il soit complètement nul. Ricky Williams n'a rien cassé dans la LCF mais il a joué superbement bien dans la NFL. Je pense que Deslauriers et Green devraient passer avant Santiago dans les plans offensifs, à moins qu'il ne s'agisse de bloquer.
I'd also like to see Kerry Carter more involved in the short passing game. The man has very underrated hands for a fullback and runs routes like a tight end.
1. Carter a bien fait comme receveur en courte distance, mais Bratton a élevé le niveau de son jeu au point d'être l'héritier logique de Ben Cahoon. Le jeu de Carter est essentiel pour maintenir une mixité de jeux qui tient les défensives adverses sur les talons, mais avec Cahoon, Bratton et Cobourne sur le terrain, cela ne laisse pas beaucoup de place pour lancer le ballon plus souvent à Carter.
Finally, I will repeat my plea for more of a sustained running game in the first half. Yes, I know Avon piled up a lot of yardage, but a good chunk of it came in the fourth quarter of games in which we were ahead by a comfortable margin and just needed to run the clock down on the ground. While I understand that we are essentially a pass-first team, I remain mystified by Trestman's reluctance to run the ball on the opening series of most games. In our Canada Day season opener against Calgary, we put together one of the most dominant drives I've ever seen to open the game, utilizing a perfect mix of running plays, quick screens, and passes. However, for the rest of the season, we elected to forgo the run almost entirely on opening series, which became progressively less effective as the year wore on.
1. Il aurait pu y avoir plus de courses plus tôt dans bien des parties. Lorsque les Alouettes ont dû faire du rattrapage en 2009, c'est souvent en remettant le ballon à Cobourne que les remontées se sont amorcées, notamment celle de la coupe Grey. Cependant, si on garde Cobourne relativement frais, les défensives adverses le verront courrir après avoir accumulé une certaine fatigue, ce qui augmente les chances de succès de Cobourne. Je crois que la stratégie des Alouettes tient un peu de cet aspect.

As the season starts, I have to say that I am looking forward to one more year of AC at the controls of this offense. What we've had at quarterback over the past decade has been pretty special. I don't think we'll realize just how much Calvillo means to this team until he's gone.

Peut-être, ou peut-être que les gens réalisent pleinement comment Calvillo est bon mais qu'à cause de la qualité de son jeu, à tort ou à raison, ils ne le voient pas terminer sa carrière bientôt.

Une ombre le suit toujours : il n'est pas perçu comme le quart des grandes occasions et la dernière coupe Grey lui donne raison et tort en même temps. Les Alouettes ont été pitoyables en première demie, il faut bien le dire, et Calvillo a permis à l'équipe un premier soubresaut avec le touché de Richardson au troisième quart. Calvillo a mené la remontée au quatrième quart, mais celui qui a sonné la charge, c'est Cobourne, en harrranguant les gars sur les lignes de côté et en haussant son jeu de deux crans. Avec un demi moins combatif, je ne sais pas si la coupe aurait été la nôtre.

Calvillo est un leader extraordinaire, et je crois cette coupe l'a fait grandir. Si les Alouettes se rendent jusqu'au match ultime cette année, je crois qu'on va voir un Calvillo différent de celui de 2009, et un club plus fort et déterminé.

Yes, Calvillo had an awful first half to the Grey Cup, but he rebounded in the third quarter and was magnificent in the fourth, making cool decisions under pressure time and again. I do agree that without Cobourne, that victory wouldn't have happened, but the coaching staff showed a tendency to get away from the run all season long in 2009. Also, the Grey Cup comeback was a total team effort. Everyone made plays, from the defensive halfbacks (INTs) to Boulay recovering Bratton's fumble to Richardson with key third-down conversions to Kerry Carter's two-point convert. Everybody contributed.

C'est vrai ça! Une victoire d'équipe contre une solide équipe.

Last night's game was very similar to the Grey Cup... but almost everything went the other way... except for that other 13th man penalty at the end of the game!

So, to quote you a bit and change your text:

Yes, Calvillo had an GREAT first half, but RIDERS rebounded in the third quarter and were magnificent in the fourth, making cool decisions under pressure time and again. I do agree that without DRESSLER, that victory wouldn't have happened, Also, the RIDERS comeback was a 3-man "team" effort (mainly Dressler, Durant, Cates).

J’aime autant que les Alouettes gagnent leurs retours à la Coupe Grey, mai il va falloir qu’ils gagnent ceux de la saison régulière s’ils veule se rendre à la Coupe…

and what makes this game concerning for the Als, they could not stop the "3" man attack in the 4th quarter and OT.

A very entertaining opening game. I am also glad that the NFL will be broadcasting about 15 games this season.

Well, we were treated to a an almost unbelieveable back-and-forth barnburner. It looked for a while like the Als were going to dominate as they have in the early part of the season for that last several seasons. HOWEVER - the game, boys, lasts 4 quarters, not 3! I have never been a great fan of “prevent defence” until and unless your team is up by 35 points and there is only 2 minutes left. Until that time, gentlemen of the D - it’s black flag! No quarters! Keep the heat turned up full! No letup on the opposing QB!

AC and the Als O did a marvellous job on O and welcome to the league, Tim Maypray! Let’s get things straightened up on D for next game - 40 points ought to be more than enough to win football games.

Very interesting to see Trestman bust out the wildcat with Calvillo lined up at receiver and Maypray taking the snap from center. I doubt we'll see it much during the season, but evidently they have tried some new things, and I am almost 100% certain that play was designed with McPherson in mind.

However, the number one priority for the offense next week is to reestablish the running game. No excuse for using a premier back like Avon primarily as a blocker. Get it done.

I also wonder if part of the reason Sask had success with the blitz was Lambert not making the right calls at the line?