Offense -- what's the problem?

Okay, fellow Als fans. We're four games into the season and the offense has yet to look strong in a single game so far. So what gives? Why is this once-mighty offense sputtering? With Stala back, I was expecting the Als to crush Hamilton on Thursday, but it didn't happen. Are our receivers not getting open and securing the football? Is Calvillo not finding them? Has Doug Berry's departure hurt our offense more than we realize? Discuss.

I dont really think Berry's departure has anything to do with it since Calvillo calls all the plays and he would have already retained all of Berry's teachings by now.

I am thinking that Calvillo might be a little too overconfident. The reason I think this is that, durring one of my football practises he came as a special guest to talk about staying in school and all that stuff. He also put emphisis that we have a Grey Cup winning team this year. He also told something like that to the media.

His main problem right now, I think, is that he overthrows the ball too much when the players aere near the sidelines. I would understand if the players were in the center of the field but thats just not the case.

Also calls the SAME plays over and over again. It seems I always see the same plays every series. Always works the sidelines, and always hands the ball off in Shotgun formation.

Don't forget that Kerry Watkins is having a bad year. I don't know what's wrong with the guy but right now he looks like the old 'hands of stone' Watkins who couldn't hold onto any ball thrown his way. Anderson is also completely invisible. Am I just not noticing that he's getting open?

Anderson is not playing well.He has the heightand is fast but he drops the long passes.There is strength on the bench.Lets see it.

I think EastSideAlouette and Ryooon are both right: Calvillo's playcalling is too predictable right now, and he's constantly overthrowing receivers along the sidelines. Of course, on the rare instances when he doesn't overthrow the ball, the receiver doesn't make the play in coverage. Anderon and Wilson are both guilty of this. The ball is thrown up, they have a chance to beat the DB one on one and come down with the ball, and they don't do it.

I can't wait until Girard is ready to play and Wilson can go back to riding pine.

The offensive problem is Calvillo overuses the bad guys:

  • Thyrone Anderson dosen't care about winning or not. He just dosen't want to be hurt, so he won't bother catching a ball unless it's an easy one.

  • O'Neil Wilson tries, but he's not talented enough.

  • Kerry Watkins is... well... Kerry Watkins. He runs fast, but he drops many balls. Still, he's better than the previous two.

When Calvillo directs 80% of his throws to these three guys, not much will happen.

Third, if you're right, then why did we let Vaughn go to Hamilton? I'm trying to figure out the rationale behind assembling our current group of receivers. As I see it, Cahoon and Stala are our money players, but neither one has the speed to be a deep threat. Watkins has the speed but drops too many balls. Anderson has the speed, size, and hands but doesn't seem to care most nights. Wilson just flat-out sucks. This is a dicey situation. I'd almost be willing to give Terence Edwards a shot and see how he performs.

Yeah, I was wondering if he misses Vaughn altho he's got enough other weapons.

They do say that offences take longer to get into gear once season starts than defences.

But there's been very little change with them this year.

They didn't wake up til 3rd qtr of first game vs Peg. Last week, I saw more of same lack of cohesiveness.

Oh well, hopefully it won't be repeat of last year's never-ending struggles on D.

We let go of Terry Vaughn because we had to give 150 000$ to Richard Karikari. Vaughn was one of the top paid players on the team, the others being Calvillo and Cahoon. He was the one to let go if money really was a concern.

Cahoon and Stala should see at least 60% of the passes. I agree we also need a speedster, and I can live with Kerry Watkins playing this role. He's not bad, but he's too sollicited for his catching ability.

Wilson was supposed to be cut two years ago, but he stayed because - get this - Anthony Calvillo personnally ask Matthews and Popp to keep him around. What does Calvillo see in him is beyond me.

As for Anderson, he's capable, but we either have to find a way to motivate him or trade him off and replace him with someone who wants to play football.

The sad thing in football is there are guys with heart, trying the best they can, but just not talented enough to make it (like Tim Gilligan) and there are guys who were blessed to have what it takes and play like pùssies (like Anderson).

I would say there is something wrong with his arm.....he has never had the strongest arm but he always got the ball to where it needed to be, he really looks like he is struggling to get the ball out to the sideline with any zip on it, which would account for the overthrows.....or he just hasnt got it in gear yet....

I wonder if its not the the new ball with the sewn in stripes. He did say he had a bit of trouble with it!

that is very possible because something just doesnt look right about his throws....

The thing about Calvillo, is that he tries to have a quick series. Long throws.

Personally, I'd like to see Robert Edwards carry the ball a little more, also, Eric Lapointe. It's not a bad thing to pick up 5 yards(which Edwards averages per carry.

Also, I think he goes to the sidelines way too often, and to Watkins way too many times, even whe he has 3 guys covering him. Use the middle, pick up yards, and also, a pass to Cahoon, is almost a sure reception.

This weekend against the Bombers will be tough, and once again, if we win this weekend, I think it's our Defence whose gonna have to bail us out, cause right now, I don't have any confidence in the Offence.

Calvillo is on a slide. He is strugling with the new ball. His arm strenght is down a little. He is not throwing the long ball well or very often. Lots of dropped balls as well. No killer instinct at all...

Al's are not as good as their record shows right now. This team could be great but Calvillo,Lapointe,Watkins are going to have to step it up a couple notch.

Another game, another disappointing performance by the offence. Yes, we racked up 44 points, but we had no deep-ball game, we never sustained a drive the length of the field, and we benefited from a Bomber team that was intent on self-destructing with penalties.

My analysis:

  1. Calvillo isn't throwing the ball well. He's overthrowing receivers on the sidelines time and again and doesn't seem comfortable with anyone except Cahoon. His playcalling is too conservative and he really needs to stop using that handoff to a motionless Robert Edwards out of the shotgun. How about some play-action, some pump-fakes to go downfield, some trickery? Why not use the four-receiver/fullback set more often?

  2. The receivers, particularly Stala and Watkins, have got to stop dropping balls at crucial moments. Your team is 2nd and 6, you need a short pass to keep the drive alive ... and your receiver drops a perfectly catchable ball. Very deflating. As the RDS commentators were saying, stop whining about missed calls, stop throwing your hands in the air in frustration; instead, suck it up and elevate your game. When the most impressive catch of the night comes from your RUNNING BACK, you know your receivers aren't playing their best football.

I find it odd because in the pre-season they were talking about their receivers being the strong point on the team.

Well, there hasn't been significant changeover in personnel.

AC still calls own plays.

Four games in and you'd think they'd be more in synch.

Of course if receivers held on to the ball....

All valid points.

Anderson finally showed up in game 4 after going missing in the first three.

Stala dropping passes? Stala of all people? What gives with that?

Watkins continues to tease...amazing catch for a TD at the end of the half that everyone saw but the refs....then goes and drops easy catches.

Girard was back, but all we did was throw him a few short out patterns...come on, he's a speedster, use him to stretch the defence.

I agree with the comment that AC's play calling is too conservative by half. The handoff to Edwards when he's standing still is a useless play, don't care to see it anymore, and I'm tired of throwing these hitch "screen" passes that get us all of two yards.

Would you guys stop complaining. We are unbeaten and we just crushed a team most people expected us to lose against.

You've been spoiled with too many wins over the last decade. Think of what it must have been like to be a Hamilton fan these last five years. Or a Saskatchewan fan these last 17 years. Appreciate what you have.