That is good news for the Argos and should keep the O-Line intact to start the new year. I was not one of the O-Line's detractors and thought the unit of Murphy-Keeping-Picard-Robertson-Ramsey was the best run blocking O-Line the Argos have had in years.
They can only get better as they play together more. Their pass blocking came under attack but IMO Joesph was holding onto the ball way too long and wasn't dropping deep enough in the pocket much of the time.
Backups C/G Mark Dewit and OT Chris Van Zeyl showed promise when filling in for Keeping and Ramsey late in the season.
Also two guys that went back to University, Zach Pollari and Gord Sawyer will probably be coming back to training camp for another look.
Also with the first pick overall Toronto could take one of the starting Canadian offensive lineman playing in the NCAA. Jon Bender at Nevada is rated the top prospect along with Danny Watkins of Baylor, Joe Eppele of Washington State and D'Michael Dean of Michigan State. All are fourth year Juniors, but Eppele (6'08 310) has made it known that he may not go back for his 5th year at Washington. So he could be the 1st over all pick and give the Argos a chance to eventually go with an all Canadian O-Line.
Well I was one of the line's detractors. I thought Murphy in particular had a bad year, certainly didn't earn the salary he was being paid. Too many opposing DE's made him look like a pylon (Odell Willis and Steve Baggs, in particular as I recall). They gave up way too many sacks, and that can't all be blamed on KJ holding the ball too long (or Pickett for that matter).
Some people were down on Murphy because of the sacks. O-Lines have to play as a unit and with first Ramsey and then Keeping playing beside Murphy I think there were some break downs. I was more disappointed with Ramsey's play than Murphy's. But the guys on defense get paid to do what they do best, rush the passer, and if one of them gets 20 sacks a year he's an all star. That's about one per game. With a QB probably attempting about 30-40 passes per game, 1 sack doesn't sound so bad. It when it happens in a game that matters.
But Joseph does hold onto the ball too long. A pro QB has to get rid of the ball by 3 steamboats or he's going down or will be flushed out of the pocket. But If he would roll out more like he used to he could bye more time. His receivers have to get good separation because Kerry isn't a pinpoint passer. I think that is a big reason for him not getting rid of the ball in a timely matter, and INT's look bad on the stats sheet.
I agree MadJack but you forgot about the numerous ill timed holding calls the line took all year. This unit needs two new starters but I doubt they will be found on the current roster. With Dewitt & VanZeyl in the lineup late in the season the run game vanished.
Rita (if he is still around) must make significant changes on the offense or the Argos will be last yet again.
Agree with last sentence in particular. WIth a new head coach in Winnipeg, you just know the Bombers will be improved from last season's train wreck, so yes the Argos are staring at last place again unless major changes are made. . .