Wednesday 10 November 2010

How They Stack Up (Offense)

With the East Division Semi-Final matchup between the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Toronto Argonauts on the horizon, I think it would be pertinent to see how the teams match up against one another at each position.

Let's start with the Offense.

Quarterback: Cleo Lemon (TOR) vs. Kevin Glenn (HAM)

Is this even up for discussion? I can't think of one person who watches the CFL that would put Cleo Lemon in the same class as Kevin Glenn.

Glenn had better stats than Lemon in every major statistical category in 2010. Glenn had more TD passes (33 to 15), more passing yards (5,102 to 3,433), a higher completion percentage (64.5 to 61.7), fewer interceptions (17 to 19) and a better QB rating (97.6 to 78.1).

Shall I continue or shall I just leave this as is and move on? Yeah, that's what I thought.

Advantage: Tiger-Cats

Running Back: Cory Boyd (TOR) vs. DeAndra' Cobb (HAM)

Cory Boyd came into this season a complete unknown. He will exit this season a star. Boyd led the league in rushing for most of the season, only ceding the crown to Fred Reid because Boyd did not play in the final week. Boyd has been great all year, despite being the one player every team must contain in order to beat the Argos. The only team so far to do so... the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.

Cobb's season got off to a rough start, but he showed flashes of his 2009 self in a few games this season. Cobb has been consistently inconsistent. He also has a problem holding on to the football, as fumbles and dropped passes have been his Achilles' heel all season.

Advantage: Argonauts

Receivers: Jeremaine Copeland... not much else (TOR) vs. Arland Bruce III, Dave Stala, Marquay McDaniel, Maurice Mann (HAM)

The disparity here comes from Lemon's inability in the passing game versus Glenn's mastery of it.

The Argos are pretty much Jeremaine Copeland and a whole lot of nothing. Chad Owens has had some good weeks, but he does most of his damage on Special Teams, not on offense. Spencer Watt had a big game in Week 19 against Montreal, but how much can be taken from that? Brandon Rideau? Mike Bradwell? Reggie McNeal? Please.

On the other side, Hamilton sports the best set of pass catchers East of the prairies. Bruce continues to produce at an All-Star level, while Stala is as clutch as they come, especially on second down. McDaniel, in only his second year, has blossomed into a very good player, and Mann, who has had his ups and downs, has put together a couple of good games this season, especially his Week 19 performance against BC.

Advantage: Tiger-Cats

Offensive Line: Rob Murphy, Cedric Gagne-Marcoux, Dominic Picard, Taylor Robertson, Chris Van Zeyl (TOR) vs. Alexandre Gauthier, Peter Dyakowski, Marwan Hage, Simeon Rottier, Jason Jimenez

On the offensive side of the football, this is a pretty even matchup. The Argos line paved the way for Boyd to have a great season. The passing game sputtered, but that wasn't the line's fault. They gave Lemon a lot of time to make plays; he just made poor decisions.

The Tiger-Cats line allowed a league-low 26 sacks all season, and also had their RB rush for over 1,000. Glenn also had perhaps his best season because he was able to stay upright.

Advantage: Tiger-Cats (but only slightly)

The Cats have a huge advantage at Quarterback and Receiver, but only a slight one on the Offensive Line. The only area, at least offensively, that the Argos have the advantage over the Cats is at Running Back.

Advantage: Tiger-Cats

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