Week 3: B.C. @ Saskatchewan

Saturday July 12th 9:30 ET.

Riders 1-1
Lions 0-2

This is a huge game for us, with Winnipeg on a roll playing the inconsistent Als and Edmonton with a home date against a competitive but new team in Ottawa, if the Riders don't iron things out they could see themselves out of the race for the West by Week 9! Not trying to say the sky is falling but games against 0-2 teams like the Lions need to be won especially at home.

With (hopefully) a full stadium to work with, Glenn and his INT problems of late should have problems with the 13th man. Durant should have a bounce back game but is playing a good line backing core in the BC Lions, this game will be tighter than it should be but in the end I feel the home field alone gives us the 26-18 win.

Predictions? Thoughts?

BC puzzles me. I don't quite agree with you about their LBs (oh and it's "corps" not "core" :smiley: )

Elimimian and Bighill are both natural MLBs; yet they use Bighill on the outside. Were I to be running that team, and was going to keep them both, then I'd want to go to a 3/4 base set and have them both inside; if not, and the team stays with a 4/3, then I'm trading one of them. I have never liked trying to squeeze a square peg into a round hole, and that is how I see Bighill on the outside.

That said, I think the Riders' D should be able to handle what passes for a BC offence so far this season. Looks like Glenn is done.

So even if your offence struggles a bit, your D should keep you in the game and win a low scoring affair.

(Having now made that prediction, look for a high scoring barn burner going into double overtime)

If the rider's d think that Glenn is washed up or done then they will be in for a long afternoon again. I have no delusions that Glenn is not capable at getting the job done. No he hasn't shown much so far this year but he like Ray likes the quick hitters and the dump and swing passes. Look for BC to try and work the middle of the field with crossing routes and screens. I hope the D learned something from the Ray experience and can put a cork in it quickly. If they can't the tide will keep rising and the dam will burst. There is little doubt that there will be a lot of focus on our D. Can they adjust and limit BC game plan or will they make the same mistakes over and over again. I'm sure Hall has gone over and over the Argo game film and hopefully he can find a fix for the problems. On offense Durant and the O line must have ball control and eat up good chunks of time of possession. This is crucial for any teams success but it seems to very obvious with the riders. If the O line can not win the battle and establish a good ground game along with protection for Durant I hate to say it but BC is more then capable of making us look really bad.
Yes a very important game not so much in the standings although a loss certainly will not help but as a benchmark on how this team responds after getting embarrassed by Toronto. The 13th man can be an advantage as long as there is something to cheer about but these are not stupid fans either and they can see pretty quickly if the Riders have got on the right track. If the Riders come out slow and struggle the 13th man is not afraid to let the team know their displeasure so it is important to get the fans in a positive mood and use that to help the riders instead of not heckling them.
I'm more then a bit nervous about this one again though its more on how the team bounces back then anything.

For me the question is, which team comes to play the one last week, or the one the week before. The D needs to wake up, we will see how we bonce back after last weeks thrashing! DD needs to get his moe joe going and we need a good solid run game. I am hoping they use anyone but allen, would love to see Tolson with a shot. I also think using T Jackson for returns or Ryan Smith would also be something to try! JMO After last week, not sure if I want to predict this one as both are hungry for that win!

Well, if we're all pretty much in agreement that the key matchup is Saskatchewan's D versus BC's O, then I take the Riders; I'll take Richie Hall over Khari Jones any day.

Yep,, Marshay showed poorly last week,, and I dont think we see Allen this week either

I've always felt the exact same with the Lions LB situation. Personally I would do the 3-4 because they have some very strong players at LB beyond them and their DL is not as good as it was a couple years ago. I've always liked the 3-4...never knowing what LB was coming in, thus having the keep the RB in the backfield to block...then sometimes just rolling them out into converge and forcing a pass into a double up. Quick way to slow down a run game to.

I think this game will all be about how the team responds to a blowout followed immediately by the leader of the secondary being tossed aside...the blowout is one thing, Anderson is another. I hope someone can step up and be that leader, and hope it is Williams. I still maintain that the Rider's O was experimenting early with their first dry weather of the year and the D put them in a situation that they were left going uphill...I think there will be a way different showing from them. Hall's D often starts out poorly in the season and gets better as it goes, but that D needs to learn to adjust, not hope that the other team eventually plays into their gameplan...ie don't give a quick hitter O 8 yards cushion where their shifty receivers will burn you if you give them a few feet cushion...stay on them and be willing to throw them off their rhythm at the cost of some illegal contact/PI in short range for 10 yard penalties.

Glenn has not looked comfortable in the Lions O at all. But he is a resilient QB. Underestimate him and you will pay...the Riders better have learned that after last week when they were not prepared at all for an Argo O that struggled in week 1.

That's kinda like saying you should pinch hit for Albert Pujols against lefties. Bighill is still a tremendous linebacker. It's not like they're putting him at boundary halfback. :stuck_out_tongue:

Any takers that the first Riders offensive play is not a hand off to Charles straight up the middle. Think I would faint from shock if they actually faked it and hit a quick slant over the middle. Nah it`s going to be a hand off to Charles.

Bagg and DD are not on the same page a5 all
Horrid drop by smith
LB is worse than i feared
Secondary zoning off again...brutal

I called this game over in first q

Oh...and the Lions did fabulous job pinning an winning field position all night

I dont know why a team would no5 just run against the Riders all night

Well now wasn't that ugly? No offense at all very little defense and the undisciplined penalties killed them. I thought the defense was going to be our strong point this year but both Argos and Lions just showed how bad we are. The Stamps man handled the Argos so I don't look forward to facing the Stamps at all.The sloppy tackling is hard to watch. Way too many missed or broken tackles and something like 10 points off of stupid stupid penalties.
So now what? We bench Allen and bring in Charles and he fumbles so then we bring Allen back in and bench Charles. Where do we go from here? Still no Tolson but does either Chamblin or Cortez finally wake the hell up and give this kid a shot?
Our O line wasn't a concern at first since its the same unit they had last year and they were very good. This year though way too many missed blocks and Durant is lucky to still have his head attached. This team as it is right now is a cluster muck(not the word I wanted to use) I say no time off for anyone during this bi week. Way too much needs to be fixed to allow anyone a break, besides its only week 3 and if players feel they need to go home maybe they should just stay there.
Very unhappy with all aspects of the team right now. Coaching, Offense, Defense all need serious work.
Is the sky falling? It may not be but its pretty damn close. As it stands right now were at the bottom of the West and the way the other teams are playing its going to take some serious turning around to get to the playoffs.

Oh that was ugly again! The sky is not falling yet, but holy wow! This team looks uninspired. Opposing teams are game planning to eliminate the Riders strengths... On defense, They are using quick hitters and short passing to avoid the strength of the pass rush, and expose the inexperience of our linebackers. On offence, they are putting extra pressure on our o-line with blitzes to take advantage of the inexperience in slot backs detecting the blitz. The Riders are a time of possession team, and against BC got schooled. The running backs have zero confidence because if they fumble, they ride the pine. Allen came in during the second half, and did nothing really. He wasn't creative at all. As soon as a defender put a hand on him, he was looking to go down so he wouldn't fumble. The offence looks anemic... DD better get some confidence in his receiving corps soon... Looks like a lot of receivers were running wrong routes or something. DD was definitely rattled last night. He looked like a beaten dog in the second half after every 2 and out, and/or stupid penalty that forced them to punt. And don't get me started on Eron Riley... First legal problems, then 2 blaring mistakes, with a penalty and then a huge drop. The Coaching staff better find the right roster here soon and start going with it. They have to be patient that the rookies will eventually get it.

Lots of work to do during the bye week in Riderville.. If they don't get this figured out quick, they will be even deeper in the basement of the West Division.

What really frustrates me is the lack of being able to adapt to what the other team is doing. Heck last week the Argos really exposed the weakness of the team on both sides of the ball and this week the Lions come in and basically use the same game plan as the Argos and the team looked totally lost. Is this a coaching thing or not having the right personnel to make these adjustments or a combination of both?
The other thing that bites my butt is the lack of execution of basic football. Missed blocks( Charles missed one badly) and Durant was very lucky to turn away from the defender and get the ball out. Had Durant not felt the heat or caught a glimpse of the player coming in he could have been really corked. Wrapping up the other teams running backs and not just making arm tackles where guys like Harris can bull through them and keep on trucking. This is just plain fundamental football nothing fancy nothing they all haven't done a thousand times before but right now they are sucking at it and this is totally unacceptable.
Like I said I can accept losses as they are going to happen but what I can't accept is what we have been witness to the last two weeks and that is the lack of good solid well disciplined football.

To start off, Durant played bad.. We should have had 2 Tds where he over threw guys on corner routes.. He had 3 or 4 passes blocked at the LOS, now this may not be as much his fault as it is Cortez's fault but something needs to change when it keeps happening. He was bouncing some passes off the turf and just looked all around bad. He refuses to run.. this is really starting to get on my nerves as it is proven that when he runs we win games, it would alleviate the pressure that defenses could put on us it would make guys covering think twice about totally committing to coverage.. There were at least 4 times I can think of where Durant had a wide open 5 to 10 yards in front of him and he chose to sit there looking for the pass and nearly got sacked each time because of it. Sadly some of the best passes Durant made all game were either dropped or ended up coming back due to penalties so he could never get into a rhythm..

For a supposed offensive genius I have for the past 2 seasons been totally unimpressed with Cortez and his play calling. Its either deep passing or running the ball right up the middle.. In this league to be successful you need to do 5 yards quick hitters getting the ball into the hands of your play makers.. Not only does this ease up pressure on your o-line, but it causes DBs to pull up tight in coverage leaving them liable to get beat deep more often. All you need to do is gain 5 yards a play.. But we seem only to want to go for 10+ every single time or run the ball right up the middle.. Is Durant in-capable of throwing a ball under 10 yards?

Receivers are gonna take time.. Taj Smith is the only guy Durant is on the same page with, sadly there is no other remedy for this but time. Hopefully Getz will be back after the bye week and we can have another guy in there who Durant trusts.. Strangely even Bagg and Durant just don't have it..

RBs.. I am honestly not that worried here aside from fumbling issues. I really think Allen has the skill set to be our main guy, I think he just needs to work on the whole fumbling deal. Hugh Charles is a nice change of pace back but I really don't feel him as our starter.. One of my favorite plays of the night last night was when we had the two back set in they faked a run to Charles and Dumped it off to Allen with a couple WR's screening for it. It was an intelligent beautifully worked play that got us near a first down(possibly an actually first down.) However if the coaching staff isn't comfortable hear we do still have Messam and Toston to try out.. Still early in the year not overly worried.

Our defense played well IMO. Held them to 14 in the first half, would have been 11 if not for the Charles fumble. Only 1 TD in the whole first half for BC.. If we could do that every week I say we end up with a winning records.
Our defense started out the second half playing well. We held them again to only anouther 12 points in the entire half... In the CFL that is pretty damn good IMO. Especially when your team goes 2 and out how many times in a row? was it 5 or 6? A defense can only do so much to hold a team when your offense isn't doing a damn thing, and keep putting you out on the field after short drives..
I will say I am slightly worried about our LBs inability to tackle.. The only guy I am semi comfortable with right now is Peters.. Brown has been bad compared to what I have come to expect from him.. His tackling is week and his coverage is bad.. We don't have a true MLB right now and I don't like it.. We are playing with a very small LB corp and it is showing.. nobody seems to be able to take a proper angle on a RB or a player in the flats and its worrying me immensely.. Peters has been the guy to show the least issues with this, not meaning that he is playing well but that he is not playing the worst.

D-line I am not overly worried about. I would like to see more push from people not named John Chick but for now I think we are ok there..
I am actually quite happy with our secondary.. They make the odd mistake but so does every secondary, other teams are showing intelligence by playing the short passing game against us.. You can only do so much against the 3 to 5 yard passes.. What we need to see more of is better tackling, which I thought was better in our secondary this game than last.. Not good but better. We only gave up 2 TDs last night and only one was passing.. I am pretty ok with that. Can't expect our defense to shut them out every game in the CFL.

Special teams is looking pretty mediocre right now on the returner side of things.. I don't think Green is our guy he makes a lot of mental mistakes and just doesn't look all that good. The rest I have no real qualms about.. Not sure about Bartell yet but looking at his stats he seems to be doing ok.

All in all though penalties killed us last night.. Too many times we took back first downs or kept drivers going for BC with penalties.. That is where the game was totally lost last night. We played undisciplined ugly football and it lost us a game we could have won.

Oh...sorry, i thought that was Smith who dropped that late one...apparently it was Riley.

As for DD, i will watch it on tv later, but to me it seemed like recievers were in the wrong spot on timing routes. When BC went Man Sask was trying some timing routes...good thing to adjust with...but guys were clearly cutting routes short.

The secondary is fine, but they are being told to play back
the LBs are, at this time, either not good enough or simply not getting it done...mainly inside.

On O, I think it is mainly just too many new faces to get used to for Durant...and all those guys working into the O. the past 2 games the only guy that was really there last year was Taj...well, Bagg as well, but he was limited and situational and not an every down guy last year...and they are not on the same page at all. Heck, they didn't even work McHenry in yesterday, and he and DD seem to always be on the same page when he is in there...he knows where to be! With that many unfamiliar faces it is going to take time...no way around it. Getting Getz back will be huge.

As I said...crap field position all night...BC did well there and really that won this game for them. As others have said...ST needs vast improvement. There were also 2-3 key penalties the Riders took that killed them in this one to.


Good read

Yet another RB fumble at the end of 1st half seemed to kill their spirit some. Maybe Avon Cobourne isn't the coach to have there, or isn't ready for it. Maybe Dyce needs to take over RBs...CC needs to keep a good eye on that in practice to see if there is something too unsettling going on. I know one thing explayers sometimes struggle with when first starting to coach is the psychology end of it and pushing players to get every inch instead of working on fundamentals. That fumble, the only thing he had to do on that play was NOT fumble...yards meant nothing...that is concerning.

Brad Miller at LB coach...maybe that needs reviewed as well. Those are the 2 really big concerns (top of a fair sized list), and it is 2 new coaches...just sayin. Hall was in charge of LBs last year, and could do it again if need be.

Further, DD has his most success when he has had an independent QB coach...NOT when that was the OC doubling up.

It is a good week for a bye

It would be a challenge being a coach after that game. Where do you start?

I think it was the play before out 2nd field goal. We were 2nd and 3, near the B.C. end zone. We were gaining yards on running plays. I thought we should have called a running play and gained 2 or 3 yards, but the call was a pass. It was one of those that was not thrown well.

So they don't return to practice until 4 days before they play. Is that part of the new collective bargain agreement? This team lack cohesion and now they don't play together for 9 days? Thats going to help I'm sure. If anything they should have to go on a retreat as a team somewhere. Camping, fishing, whatever but do it as a team. Obviously not everyone is on the same page here and with the new faces it might be a good idea to get to know each other and what makes them tick. Hell I don't care if they sit around a camp fire and sing kumbaya until the cows come home,just as long as they start to play as a single unit.

To me the moment that really changed the game was just before the first half. They had played well all 2nd quarter and had taken control of the game back from BC. BC was forced to use their timeout earlier and we got the ball deep in our own end and decided not to kneel out the half and take a lead into the break. Stupid fumble a couple plays later and we go in down a point.