Outlook for 2018 Bombers

Well, the 2017 season came to a crashing end last Sunday at ol IGF stadium - nice crowd, around 27,000 and according to reports Wad Midler only papered the house with 2,000 worthless seats - so 25,000 paid in bitter Winnipeg weather is a testament to the hardiness and loyalty of bomber fans. Should also help Miller pay down the mortage!

btw - when The Bombers cut a cheque for 4 million plus - exactly who do they cut it to? It should be Province of Manitoba, however until someone verifies it - I think it just could be bounced back into the holding company for the bombers! VERIFICATION REQUIRED

Prospects for 2018:

  • lots of guys coming into free agency, so we'll see how loyal these guys are to commandant O'Shea when money is on the line
  • Two main stalwarts, West Dressler (32/33) and Andrew Harris (30/31) are getting up there. Dressler is pretty much guaranteed to miss a clump of games - how can he not, he's 5'6" and 159 lbs. Harris will continue to get banged around if they keep throwing him those floaters in the backfield.
  • Guys like Westerman, Legget, Bryant are starting to age. Legget is still spunky but has to be backed up with speed guys to make up for his loping style
  • Sam Hurl was a real atrocity in the bombers D middle. O'Shea, of course in his usual pattern of denial wanted to keep the guy viable but if you saw last couple games, Hurl's ice-time was severely limited
  • Richie Hall is plain and simple - a horrid defensive coordinator. Bombers have no one to promote from within. Comm. O'Shea wants to keep Hall (loyalty pledge). Gomer Kyle (GM) better get on the blower with Noel Thorpe before its too late. Give Hall his guaranteed bomber payout and let him live out the rest of his life in his mobile home estate south of Regina

So for 2018, expect more of the same. However, don't expect progress to continue. O'Shea has shown that his bizarre ideas and in-game moves are habit NOT anomaly. He's blown himself up in 2 straight playoff games.

Not much to be expected in 2018 CIS draft. Walters is horrid at the draft table. Trade some away for guys who can help in 2018. If Fatty Ekaka is the best they could find with #1 overall last year - the entire draft table should be blown up.

My guess, with a good group of core guys the bombers will descend slightly - they won't be 13-5 or 12-6, more likely 10-8, even 9-9 depending on when their injury assault comes.

Bomber fans will support this dog no matter what. Season tix might take a slight dip (2 to 4% down) but Miller relies more on corporate sales, advertising, gimmickry, alcohol, concessions and parking than he does on a couple hundred mopes turning in their season ticket loops.

If they come out of the chute 1-6 or 2-8, I suspect O'Shea's days are numbered 'til Wadzilla has to bring a security detail into O'Shea's office and force him to turn in his keys to the desk fort. NOTE: Its pretty obvious most in bomberville are terrified of the former Argo Mountain Man, Wad Miller no exception. That's why its ultra important to keep Paul Lapolice around as the go-to guy if O'Shea has to be cut loose. And to replace Richie Hall with Noel Thorpe - or someone half-arsed competent.

Make at least half the mortgage payment,
Find a few big time money making concerts to host,
Make money doing it,
Somehow bring in some high quality international soccer,
Make money doing it,
Eliminate the Bored,
Sell their box,
Put WAD on a low carb/no booze diet,
Hire Doug Brown as "the face", WAD doesn't sell tickets,
Find an aggressive D coach,
Find a way to get Grey up here,
use that NI on a stud MLB,
Sign the FA's,
make some trades,
make some more,
Hide NOS's game day shorts inventory,
Anticipate Harris getting on,
Rinse, repeat.

.......So the inevitable one and done occurred on a frigid day in the Peg... but not as cold as the horrid D co-ordinators schemes in the second half...Utter bull$hit....Esks. have some really good receivers but on two glaring plays they were left all on their lonesome to put up six and that's all she wrote..... I suspect Ritchie has drawn his last pay cheque here...Hurl has to be replaced or shuffled off to special teams.....O'Shea...hear this....he's not a bloody linebacker.....See who is available in free agency and go after him hard....We also need a bigger receiver to complement Adams....

...As far as the game itself.....Nobody is mentioning the call by O'Shea in our end to try and run for a first instead of punting.....IF it works you look great....if it doesn't....Mike O you're a goat

.....Harris played his heart out in a losing effort....Great player who is not that young anymore for football....A few other players are reaching their best before date and we have some players to sign before free agency...Going to be an interesting offseason to see if we can get better and keep our keepers...

....Long offseason once more and this regime better make the right moves and be a solid contender for the Cup for sure, or there will be a 'gutting' and we start all over again....First move is to get Thorpe on the line and get the ball rolling

I mentioned the fake in a few posts on the reg forum, Papa. My biggest complaint with the fake was that it was completely unnecessary. It was not a crucial part of the game or the field. MOS even admitted that he should have called a timeout and stopped the fake, BUT HE DIDN'T !!! He then writes off any change of momentum saying that his guys were still pumped. One major thing, he didn't mention the momentum that Edm gained by stopping the fake. Edm scored in it's next 2 possesions directly after the failed fake......I'm no coach but I would have kicked a punt trapping Edm deep in their own end. The D makes them go 2 and out and then Harris and Flanders run, run, run.. But no, we went away from the run. That's the 1st mistake and the biggest. The run was working. With Lefevour in there, the Esks did not know who to cover. 3 threats, all able. Keep the ball away from Reilly. The run could have done that...MOS or somebody decided that Dressler, Denmark, Washington and Coates could carry the game for us. Again, it looks like loyalty to players cost us a game. The whole friggin world knew we were shallow in the receiving dept. How come MOS couldn't figure that out ? Maas must be chuckling somewhere.

You guys are kinda light in the loafers compared to some of the loathing, rage & hate I'm hearing on local radio shows, the rags and some bomber sites (not the Ed Tait controlled sites).

A tiny minority of the locals stand behind Wad/Mik/Gomer - saying that they're proud of the bombers cuz O'Shea said he was proud of his players, proud of Richie Hall, proud of his secondary - blah, blah, blahs!

Most are reacting worse than you guys - certainly worse than me!

Funny thing. Just because the team is tied at the half there's an expectation to take the duke. I should point out that the teams are tied at zero to start the game, too. Great position to win, right? WRONG!

The pre-game comparisons all favoured the Esks. Superior coaching, far superior/stronger/faster WRs, better o-line, more mobile QB, superior defensive tactics & strategy.

Bombers sported a supposedly better FG kicker (that's questionable, I'd take Sean Whyte in a nanosecond if he came available next year), a better OC (OK, Plop is probably the best in the league but he was forced to work with inferior personnel - only Nichols (hampered by injuries) and Harris are top dawgs; Dressler is a tiny little man, who does his job but cannot withstand massive hits (either gets injured or coughs up the ball). Pink Flanders is OK but not even close to CJ Gable in the totality of running and blocking.

Bombers d-line was supposedly rounding into form - but all I saw Sunday was 4 guys (5 or 6 if you count the rotation) who Doug Browned themselves vs. the massive Esky o-line (sumo wrestling - where you basically engage in tests of strength but forget about actually getting to the target (QB Reilly) and were engorged by the esks o-line.

Linebackers were exceptionally weak - factor in the ineffective and cowardly Hurl, no Legget, the under-powered Fogg and you have a LB crew even worse than Edmonton (their supposed weakness). The bomber DBs are all athletic and possess above average speed - BUT they're failures in mid to long coverage (fault them or Rich Hall, probably both)

So the only real surprise was the half-time tie. One explanation was Edmonton was testing the bombers to cough up their gameplan and boy did we ever. Esk receivers also came down with some frying pan hands in the first half - probably dropping at least 5 balls in the short to medium range. If they don't drop the balls - Edmonton up at least 21-10 at the half.

Factor in Micro Shea being inferior to Jason Maas in just about all areas - except enforced loyalty and you have the official recipe for disaster.

Can't wait for the draft now - just itching to see what fat & out-of-shape human particle the Bombers draft with 7th or 8th overall. Any more Etiennes, Addisons, Richards & Fatkakaties to drool over?

The Winnipeg Free Press - a major media arm of the Wpg Blue Bombers were infuriated by Sunday's drubbing at the hands of the Eskimos.


MAJOR FLAWSEXPOSED IN PLAYOFF LOSS (article by former bomber all-star and current radio color guy Doug Brown)


BOMBERS TAKE DUMP IN FRONT OF HOME FANS (by Jeff Hamilton, a beat football writer)

even worse on TSN 1290 - where Troy "Wide Left" Westwood and Brandon "Wix" Rewucki are calling for heads to roll; only the dim-witted and always out of sorts Jim Toth is calling for same old, same old - I think Toth is actually passive-aggressive)

…We lost a couple of really good players at the end of the season…namely Leggett and Adams and a hurt Nichols…I still think we lose because our defensive schemes are antiquated and the guy delivering them is of the same ilk,antiquated…Murmurs are that O’Shea is thinking that defensively we were okay…If that is the case…get your road apple and a map Mike cuz you’re done here and you’ll never have a winner…Huge flaw with O’Shea is that he clings to crap…gives a player forever to show his stuff and in a couple of cases the stuff shown was junk…See Hurl, Roc and the medical case Addison Richards…Waste of space and time…Couple that with some really skeptical calls in a game and I have to cast a jaundiced eye in Mr. O’Shea’s direction…Every position should be questioned on this club after that ‘spinning your tires’ season…If Bomber management sticks with the status quo for next year, there has to be some serious questions asked of management…Miller better step in if big steps aren’t made in the off season or the fans will start to walk away from this club in great numbers. >:(

I think Miller is counting on a 2 to 4% reduction in season tix Papa. If the base is 19,500 then that's only 390 to 780 peeps turning in their vouchers.

However, if it somehow gets into the 4.5% or greater (ie. over 1,000 holders) then Miller has to snap into action.

Losing 400 or 500 season ticket holders is chump change to Miller - it won't be enough to force him to walk into O'Shea's office and do the pink slip mamba.

I was pulling for WBB to go to the Grey Cup; too bad they came up short. The failed fake punt seemed to pull the wind from their sails but all in all a great season.

Thanks. Tabbyfan. Nice to hear from a rival fan what they think. It certainly slices through all the doom and gloom although the decision making for the Bombers has to improve/change. We've got a few of the key pieces, we just need a few more. Right after we win next year's GC, I hope Ham follows the year after !

One has to admire O'Shea's extreme loyalty to his soldiers. Same with Gomer Kyle & Wadzilla to a slightly lesser extent.

However, when it comes to professional football - extreme loyalty can lead to continual losing spirals - EVEN WHEN THE MEN ARE PERPETUALLY SALUTING EACH OTHER!

Don't get me wrong - Bud Grant, Cal Murphy & Mike Riley were loyal to the guys who excelled or did the job so well he couldn't cut them. O'Shea seems to think loyalty is the be all and end all. That puts the entire organization into perpetual crisis mode - perpetuating players, coaches, even management (recruiters, signers) who cannot operate properly under any kind of duress.

The above list is the free agent list as tweeted by a noted bomber reporter/house-boy Darrin Bauming of TSN/1290 (he works for other media, too)
Quite a list - Spooner was the bombers #15 overall pick in last year's CIS draft but because he ended up on the bomber's practice roster he's deemed a free agent.

Lots of guys being paid far more than market value - reason being in order to bring them to an undesirable place like Winnipeg. Ex. Stan Bryant - nearly $190k, Paddy Neufeld - $140k, Weston Dressler - $175k, Matlock - $195k.

Ian Wild is also being fed a lot of hay - and he missed 13 games this year, 6 last year. Guys like Wild, Dressler, Legget, Neufeld, Bond, etc. are big game hunters but they're haunted by injury history. Fact!

I do think Ian Wild (only 28/29) might make the next great defensive coordinator in the CFL. O'Shea probably prefers old boys club guys - not guys moving from the roster to the coaching ranks! Even if they're better!

.....A lot of fa's to get under contract...Spooner is a surprise but I think Walters has something done already with the guy....I would be very surprised to see him walk...We can't count on Gray next year....that right now looks whimsical...Wild will be kept on as Lyle says because he has a future in coaching with the club...He has the smarts and can still play a hard hitting game...of course when healthy...I don't agree Lyle that we are not looked upon as a good destination compared to a few other clubs...Does that mean we keep all of our fa's....not on your Nellie....I think Medlock will walk for more dough BUT we had a promising kid kicking the tar out of the pigskin last year, that we drafted....I think we bring him in and he sticks on the roster....Big money saving right there with Meds. gone and should bode well for signing our priorities......Get Mulumba in here and get a gamer for the middle of the D and we'll have something going on....Don't know whether Westerman will be back....I think that one is up in the air....Lot's of work for Mr. Walters

Good thoughts Papa
If Ian Wild thinks its time to take off the pads for good, he should immediately be named a defensive assistant - linebackers coach to begin with. Don't let a good football mind walk. But only Ian knows if the hacks of the gridiron are taking too much of a toll on his under-sized frame.

Matlock won't get much more than he got here. Montreal or Ottawa might want to take him on - but he won't inhale more than $150k in either market.

If I could key on a kicker - obviously the kid we had in camp and who returned to CIS comes to mind. Also, Sergio Castillo, who damaged himself vs. the bombers a few weeks back. If he's 100% he's got at least 5 yds, maybe 8 on Medlock.

Heck even the guy in BC has more leg than Justin.

If you paid attention you noticed Medlock's woes started last season when O'Loyal trotted him out to kick a game-tyin' 62 yd field goal vs. BC. Not only did Justin miss - he was at least 10 yds short. Most of his recent field goals over 40 yds - barely cleared the goalpost upright. He's 31 and he's starting to lose a bit of strength in his leg. Still a very good kicker - but too many needs and the bombers can no longer afford to overpay for an import dual kicker. They've lost their only 2 playoff games with Medlock in the lineup.

Geoff Gray will want to go thru at least one more training camp in New York. Hasn't seen any game action yet but the fact NYG keeping him around indicates he has some promise.

We let Henoc Muamba get away - first to the NFL where he put in a couple solid years as an Indy special-teamer and then to the dreaded Riders where he's putting together an all-star campaign and is still around for the eastern final. Muamba would look good on his original drafting team - but Gomer Kyle figured Sam Hurl and other rubs were better.

........Mikey says today that Lapo will be around for 18'....kinda nixes the thought of him heading out for a head mans job...No mention of Hall though....hmmmmm just maybe the Irishman has seen the light and it sunk in that Ritchie is deadweight... Could have told him that last year..in fact I think we mentioned that very fact on here, Ad infinitum ..Probably won't hear anything official until we full fill the unwritten gag order about changes till after the Cup...Steinauer's name being bandied about as a replacement....but like Gray showing up next year, I think that's a stretch....I doubt he's going to leave his NCAA gig anytime soon

Mikey has lots of predictions. Some, mostly his injury ones are simply guesses or wish list stuff.
Gray will NOT attend camp in 2018, but he could pry loose from the s-fest in New York by end of September.
They won't cut Richie Hall loose until they secure a replacement. If they haven't talked to Noel Thorpe yet, something is really rotten in Denmark. Like you say, Steinauer is a pipedream for '18. . . . . . my Plan D if they can't get anyone like Steinauer or Thorpe for '18 is to give the defense to Ian Wild and pull him out of the line of fire.
You'd then have at least one guy on your staff (Lapo) who'd be natural hire if Miller got tired of O'Shea's extreme loyalty act and another (Wild) who could learn up in the next 2 or 3 years, putting himself in position to behead coach by age 33/34.

Bombers did OK last time they hired a 28 yr old head coach, didn't they? (Bud Grant)
Not bad with guys in their 50s & 60s (Spavital, Jauch, Ritchie, Murphy)

Another old guy - a shoeshiner named Joe Zaleski failed miserably after Grant's departure.
32 yr old Mike Riley was an incredible success before bolting southward; 37 yr old Jeff Reinbold an incredible failure.
Warthogs like Mike Kelly, Timbo Burke, Bud Rileyall flamed out.
Even Allie Sherman was only 31/33 when he took on the bombers in the mid 50s

Plop was barely 40 when he got his first go as Bomber HC

.......IF Wild turned out to be another Bud 'the ol fox' Grant I would be elated....I know he has the grey matter for the job but will he get the time to prove himself...Folks around these parts are getting awfully antsy about a 27 year drought...Which brings me to next year and Mike O...IF he keeps Hall and falters out of the gate, I want to see him gone...He can pack his bags along with the inevitable firing of Hall and head back to North Bay...The fans in Winnipeg would have seen enough of that act and revolt...

Fans in Winnipeg have one major fault. They are far too forgiving. Guys like O'Shea, Miller, Paul Maryse, Kelvin Cheveldayoff, Mark Chipman have learned the secret - and the secret is - BROWN NOSE THE LOCALS TO THE ENDS OF THE EARTH

if Hall is revealed to continue his awful work as DC due to O'Shea's extreme loyalty - and the team comes out of the chute no better than 1-5, 1-6 there better be 3 bus tickets to North Bay ready for the O'Shea family and a couple Greyhounds going the other way to Regina (for Hall)


I only have one more thought. How much more of the same do you want to see before you pass judgement?

Dude! Do you seriously look at life this way?Wow!

I'm really hoping we drop Hall.It is the only thing holding us back in my opinion.OShea is a real draw here,and I think Walters will fill the gaps.I think we need to see some results from the scouting department.We are close,and now we just need to take the next step.Nice to see our OC resign.