Monday 28 June 2010

8 Teams, 8 Days: Hamilton Tiger-Cats

Last Season 9-9, 2nd in the East (Lost East Division Semi-Final 34-27 to BC)


If the offense can pick up where it left off last season, the Ti-Cats will have no problem scoring points. Kevin Glenn is firmly entrenched as the starting Quarterback heading into 2010, whereas last season he was the backup to Quinton Porter until late in the season. With a full season behind centre, Glenn is in a position to have the best season of his career.

At Running Back the Cats have stud-in-the-making DeAndra' Cobb. Cobb broke out last season, his first in the CFL, with over 1,700 total yards. The only thing he needs to do in 2010 is show that 2009 wasn't a flash in the pan. Expect many more "Cobbheads" around Ivor Wynne this summer and fall.

Where the Tabbies have a leg up on almost everyone else is at Receiver. Arland Bruce III, Dave Stala, Marquay McDaniel, Maurice Mann and Drisan James make up a very formidable group. All of those players are in line to see their best statistical seasons, and Bruce could be an MOP candidate again at the end of the season.

The Offensive Line holds over many player from last season, and that continuity could be key to the Cats' success. Marwan Hage, considered by some to be the best Centre in the CFL, returns to anchor a Line mixed with veteran talent and youthful exuberance. The Ti-Cat offense should not have a problem scoring points and could be one of the best offenses in the CFL in 2010.

Player to Watch: Drisan James


The Tiger-Cat defense has the makings of a dominant unit. The Defensive Line should be a disruptive force in 2010. Last season, the Cats started a lot of younger players, and this season many return to pick up where last season ended. The guy expected to turn the most heads is second-year player Khari Long. Long had 10 sacks in 2009, and it wouldn't be crazy to see that total rise in 2010. I also expect some big things from Garret McIntyre. He was plagued by injury in 2009, but if his health permits, he could be a double-digit sack guy.

There isn't a better trio of Linebackers in the CFL than the ones the Cats trot out week in, week out. 2009 All-Stars Markeith Knowlton and Jamall Johnson return, as does Otis Floyd, who is the heart of the defense. This is an experienced group, and another year together should make them even better.

The Secondary is the one place that the Cats needed to upgrade this season. Being rid of Bo "The Human Turnstile" Smith is a big help (unfortunately he might be back if the New York Jets cut him). Adding two solid players in Will Poole and Jason Shivers also helps. The Cats also have some tremendous depth with Dylan Barker, Sandy Beveridge, Geoff Tisdale, Jykine Bradley and Jerome Dennis. If the Secondary can come together as a more cohesive unit, and cut out some of the big plays that plagued it in 2009, the Cat defense could finish the season as the best in the CFL.

Player to Watch: Khari Long


Let me begin by saying I am highly biased. I am a life-long Tiger-Cat fan, and I sometimes let that cloud my judgment. That said, this team has a very realistic chance of making a serious run at the Grey Cup in 2010. The offense is loaded with weapons: a QB with the skills to get it done, a RB who is both a threat rushing and receiving and a WR group that is among the top 3 in the CFL. The defense is full of playmakers and difference-makers, with a D-Line that should be able to consistently collapse the pocket, LBs who can create havoc and rack up tackles and DBs who should be better. The Special Teams is even better, with the Cats having signed Kicker Sandro DeAngelis, who is the most accurate Kicker in CFL history. It's been too long since the Cats have been considered a legitimate contender, and if 2009 was the appetizer, then 2010 could be the full course meal.

PREVIOUS: Winnipeg Blue Bombers


  1. Bang on.

    Question marks at punter and the kick return team (perhaps the returner but more our blocking, which really sucked at times last year). But otherwise, this is the most solid collection of talent the Tiger-Cats have fielded since they won the Grey Cup in 1999. It will be disappointing if they don't exceed .500, and by more than one game. I ***expect*** them to be playing in the East final.

    PS: I thought former OT Charles Thomas was the Turnstile? ;-)

  2. PPS: You forgot about Tafralis. :-D

  3. Don't worry about Tafralis. I'm sure to get nuclear heat from his fans tomorrow.