With this coaching staff can we look forward to a repeat?

Jacques Chapdelaine as offensive coordinator, Rich Stubler as defensive coordinator, Chuck McMann as special teams coordinator and Mike Benevides as head coach.

No Lions fan can forget the miracle season of 2011! Zero wins after five starts. Only one win after seven starts! The Lions were all but done. And then something happened. I'm not sure anyone knows exactly what but whatever it was it sure felt good to watch.

When all was said and done the Lions finished 2011 in 1st place over all, hosted the Western Final and beat Calgary and then put the icing on the cake by winning the Grey Cup before the home fans at B.C. Place.

But that was 2011 and the slate has been wiped clean. It is memory now. Trades have taken place. There have been new acquisitions. The Lions have lost a few familiar faces but many of them thankfully are returning. Lulay, Simon, Phillips, Marsh, Mitchell et al.

I'll miss seeing Wally Buono on the side lines this season but look forward with anticipation to see how Mike Benevides is as the new head coach. It is not without reservations. He is operating in uncharted waters. Being the Defensive Coordinator and being head coach are not the same thing. Does he have what it takes? I don't know. I know that as DC he had a dismal start last year with only one win in seven starts but in the end the Lions had the fewest number of points scored against in the entire CFL! So, Mike needs to take some of that credit. As head coach he will be making decisions that only the head coach will make. Is he experienced enough?

Last year it was the Lions that had the best defensive team despite a dismal start to the season. Will Rich Stubler be able to say the same in November 2012?

Jacques Chapdelaine is once again offensive coordinator. He was under a lot of criticism for lack of creativity last year but he had the last word and he is wearing a Grey Cup ring to prove it. You cannot win a championship unless you score more points than the opposition.

The unknown is a thing called chemistry. All of the coaching staff are capable in their individual roles but just like on the field where the players need to gel so too does the coaching staff. It will be crucial that there is good chemistry amongst the coaching staff especially now that there is a new head coach. Benevides earned his stripes as DC. He will have to do the same as head coach by providing excellent leadership, making good coaching decisions during crucial moments of a game and earning the respect of his players and staff.

The Lions have the makings of a team that can win another Grey Cup and do what it has never done in Lions' history- actually win back to back Grey Cups! Let's hope that the coaching changes do not hinder this goal.

First off; Lions beat Edmonton, not Calgary as Quoted above :stuck_out_tongue: With Stubler (3-4 D) the Leos will be more of an attacking Defence (blitz wise), putting more pressure on the Quarterback. The O with Lulay (matured so to speak) could run the ball more/play more ball control killing the clock and this will be a plus for Lulay not having to run as much.

The Lions have the best defense in the league. They have the personnel to execute ANY scheme. Offense aint too shabby either. Lulay is probably the best all-around QB in the league right now too. I expect them to repeat as champs. I will be shocked (barring a rash of injuries) if they don't win the west. The Lions should be disappointed with anything less than another ring.

Pressure for Benavides? Nahh. :wink:

"First off; Lions beat Edmonton, not Calgary as Quoted above"

What would I do without you Oldclarke? You are right once again! :rockin: I'd say it was typo error but I don't think anyone would buy it.lol I guess while I was reminiscing I was thinking about that nail biter where McCallum kicked a last play 53 yarder against Calgary for the win after already setting a field goal kicking record. Anyways, by the sounds of it you guys feel that it doesn't matter what the coaching staff is like, the Lions will win regardless. You're probably right but then do we really need the coaches or are they there just for show. lol

[u]making good coaching decisions during crucial moments of a game[/u][/b] and earning the respect of his players and staff..
For how great a coach Wally has been, he does have a history of sometimes making odd (or poor) choices at critical moments of games.

I'm sure MB will do a bang-up job at the helm this season - and if he does need advice, he still has Wally right there. Go Lions!

"For how great a coach Wally has been, he does have a history of sometimes making odd (or poor) choices at critical moments of games.".....by YoEleven

And how well I remember some of those "bonehead" calls!

I have to say with the team and coaching staff we have I'll be surprised if we have another slow start like we had the last two years. We'll see how the Lions do under MB in which I have confidence in as HC .

I really don't see why we shouldn't expect to repeat this year. When it comes down to it the coaches are still all working for Buono. Benevides has the benefit of being able to lean on Buono for guidance while still growing into his new role. Bringing in Stubler was a good move in my opinion seeing how him and Benevides have a good working relationship. On the offense side not much will change. Nothing needs to change really, by end of season the Lions offense was really potent and will only get better now that they have last season behind them. Chapdelaine I suspect will keep much the same flavor to the offense. It will be nice going forward for the offense given that they proved during the Grey Cup that the offense can still be very effective even if Lulay can't run the ball. But, when the situation presents itself isn't it great to know we have a QB with enough speed and stamina to rush for a 60 yd TD?! As long as the team can keep their egos in check coming off a championship season I think it'll be a fairly smooth operation for the coaching staff this season.

At the very least I expect that we'll win the west. Recent championship and bias aside I truly believe the Lions have the best team in the CFL and do not foresee any reason why they can't get another one this year.

Any of you guys ever seen the movie Friday Night Lights? Stuff happens: guys get hurt, players and/or coaches underachieve, bad calls happen virtually every week, turnovers happen at terrible times. And last year’s Champions get a little extra attention from the other teams, all year long. Last year is history; the 2012 season is the only thing that matters. The list of repeat Grey Cup championship teams is pretty short. Does that mean they can’t win it all in 2012. No, but the odds are against it.

The Leos still don’t have a proven middle linebacker and Anton MacKenzie is probably not that guy. Benevides is still a wild card in my mind, until he puts a couple of winning seasons together. Below Harris there isn’t much depth at running back. Plenty of very good assistant coaches, including Rich Stubler, couldn’t successfully make the leap to head coach. At some point, maybe this season, maybe next, age will catch up to MacCallum and we’ll need a seasoned all around kicker. We have Lulay for a couple more years, maybe more, but if he gets hurt we’ll need an experienced CFL veteran QB, and Mike Riley is not that guy…at least not yet.

Don’t get me wrong boys, I’m not trying to rain on your parade. But we aren’t going to win the 2012 Grey Cup because we had an improbable turnaround after a dismal start to last season and won it all. That happens once a generation in this league. Have you all forgot that this team went 1-6 early on. Who will be this years’ Davis Sanchez or David Hyland, promising secondary guys who absolutely reeked early last year?

Dooger in Surrey :cowboy:

"Don't get me wrong boys, I'm not trying to rain on your parade" by dooger

You could never rain on my parade dooger. I always have a great big golf umbrella out and up when you post!

I agree with some of the things you've said. Some of the other teams have made some very good acquisitions during the off season and the teams the Lions will be facing may well be much stronger. I too have concerns if players such as Lulay or McCallum go down but the same can be said of all the CFL teams. Teams that might pose a threat to the potent Lions' offence and defence may have their own problems as the season progresses.

I would not agree that last year's turn around was some sort of freakish anomoly [my words]. Yes, they had a dismal start but it is the way they turned things around and finished off the season that matters. They won their games. The games were not handed to them. There were no fluke wins. Not only that, although they started the year off poorly many of those games the team lost were quite close. And while stats can be skewed and manipulated we cannot argue the fact that the Lions had the fewest points scored against and almost the most points scored for.

I would also not agree that last year is history and means nothing anymore. The coaching staff has a tremendous team to build on. I'm sure the Eskies heard the same arguments you present back in '78 when they began their 5 year dynasty. Much of your reasoning could have been applied back then but the Esks still won 5 consecutive Grey Cups!

"The list of repeat Grey Cup championship teams is pretty short." by dooger

Half of the teams comprising the current CFL have won back to back Grey Cups: Montreal, Toronto, Edmonton, and Winnipeg. Throw in Ottawa when the CFL was made up of 9 teams and it's more than half. I would not call that a pretty short list. In fact some of those teams not only repeated during their franchise history but they have multiple repeats.
The Lions have a very balanced attack and an excellent D. Personally I think they're going to do very well and I don't think they'll be slow coming out of the gate. And I don't expect them to be coming out with a swagger- especially during the season opener against Winnipeg.