Monday 12 September 2011

Morning-After Thoughts (Week 11)

Labour Day weekend was blowout weekend, and Revenge Weekend was pretty much the same. The teams that lost in Week 10 had reason to want revenge (hence my naming the week as such). The teams that got angry, got even; the teams that didn't, got hammered. Week 11 saw a lot of previously held beliefs get shattered. It's just another example of how things can change so quickly in the Canadian Football League.
  1. Pundits like to claim that winning back-to-back games against the same opponent is difficult. With every game in Week 11 being that type of game, the money was on at least three different winners. Yet, BC once again pounded Toronto, and Saskatchewan beat the pants off Winnipeg for a second week in a row. Montreal and Calgary got their revenge, so teams who lost in Week 10 went 2-2 in Week 11. What does this prove? I'm not quite sure.
  2. There were four receivers drafted in the first round of the 2011 CFL Draft, and not one of them has done anything of note this season. Calgary's Anthony Parker, BC's Marco Iannuzzi, Edmonton's Nate Coehoorn and Winnipeg's Jade Etienne have combined for four catches for 58 yards (and Iannuzzi has one interception). But if guys like BC's Akeem Foster and Shawn Gore, and Winnipeg's Cory Watson are any indication, year two will be much more successful for these four men than year one.
  3. Is giving Nik Lewis the nickname "Thick" just a nice way of saying he's fat?
  4. Is Chris Bauman the biggest bust of the last five to ten years?
  5. A successful Hail Mary – such as the one Calgary pulled off against Edmonton – has to be one of the three most exciting plays in football.
  6. The Lions played their last game at Empire Field, and I think no one is happier than the Lions themselves. In the 14 games they played at their temporary digs, the Lions were a pitiful 5-9. The only team that didn't find a way to win at Empire Field was the Toronto Argonauts. Every other team went into BC and won a game in the year and a half that the Lions called that facility home. The Lions are going to be happy to return to BC Place.
  7. Steven Jyles saw his first action of the year, and it was about what was expected. Once he got himself into the game, he played better. It will take him some time to find his rhythm, but when he does, the Argos will be a better team.
  8. Last season, the Argos used, and some might say relied on, Special Teams trickery to win nine games. This week against BC, the Argos pulled out a fake punt that was stopped (thanks to a Marco Iannuzzi interception of Noel Prefontaine). The failure to execute that play is a microcosm of the Argos' 2011 season. Last year, every bounce went their way; this year, none are. That's the difference between being 5-5 (as the Argos were at this point in 2010) and 2-8 (which the Argos are now) after 10 games.
  9. It looks like BC finally realized how to commit to the running game.
  10. Toronto has fired their Offensive Coordinator and cut their starting Quarterback; when will the attention turn to the man responsible for bringing those guys in in the first place? Jim Barker's seat must be very warm. There is no way that Toronto can go into next season with Barker as both Head Coach and General Manager.
  11. One of the most astonishing stats I've ever seen is the current streak that BC's Defense is on. They have not allowed a touchdown in a mind-boggling 53 straight possessions. I'm at a loss for words.
  12. Jamel Richardson is the best Receiver in football. That is all.
  13. Since Marc Trestman became the Head Coach of the Alouettes in 2008, Montreal is a terrific 26-5 at home. It may not be the loudest crowd, but Percival Molson Stadium is still one of the toughest places for teams to play.
  14. The Bombers have been exposed in their two games against Saskatchewan, and with two dates with the Alouettes looming in the next three weeks, Winnipeg's once iron grip on first place in the East could very well be slipping.
  15. I said that the problems in Regina were much bigger than the Head Coach. Well, I guess I was wrong. Saskatchewan looks like a completely different team under Ken Miller's direction. If he finds a way to get the Roughriders into the playoffs, everyone in the province will pitch in a buck to ensure he stays the Head Coach.
  16. I love Winnipeg's throwback jerseys and helmets. The Bombers should ditch their current jerseys and stick with the throwbacks. In fact, that'd be a good idea for the majority of the league.
  17. Hey, did you hear that Andy Fantuz is back with the Saskatchewan Roughriders? In all seriousness, Fantuz may not have put up huge numbers, but his presence clearly helped other Receivers, namely Weston Dressler and Chris Getzlaf, find room to work. Once Fantuz gets into the flow of things, he's going to go back to being the Andy Fantuz of old.
  18. In the loss, Terrence Edwards needs to be singled out for a great game. That's the Terrence Edwards everyone remembers from 2010.
  19. Tribute to Officials Month? Really? That's got to be a joke.... right?
  20. After weeks of .500 or better in my game picks, I whiffed big time in Week 11. The final tally for the week is a putrid 1-3, with the lone win being the BC Lions. I missed on the Eskimos, Tiger-Cats and Blue Bombers. Better luck next week.

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