How do you blow a 22-0 lead??????
I didn’t catch the first quarter of the game. I was in my car, driving from Rosthern to Saskatoon. When I finally arrived at my sister’s house, the Riders were up 22-0.
I should have stayed in my car.
The Riders did not deserve to win this game. Surprisingly, not many people are blaming the referees for the Riders’ implosion on Sunday afternoon. Yes the Riders got the first down on the 3rd and inches play (horrible spot and a missed offside call on Edmonton) and the Dressler incompletion should have been reviewed (the right call was made), but the game shouldn’t have come down to those plays.
The Riders’ new slogan should incorporate the phrase, “Second Half Meltdown.”
The blame for this game falls on everyone, from the QB to the o-line and d-line, the return team and the coaching staff. Some things have become quite apparent:
- Durant is not the answer. If you didn’t know this before, now you do. He had time on so many plays to do something. He’s hesitant, almost scared, and it shows. While the o-line didn’t have that great of a game, you can’t expect it to hold guys up for more than a few seconds. Durant needs to make decisions!! His lack of arm strength is becoming more and more apparent. He can’t threaten the middle or go deep. The Riders are stuck playing a short game that has become ridiculously easy to defend.
- There is no running game. When you have two talented running backs in Wes Cates and Hugh Charles, why do you not use them? What’s wrong with employing a double back set? Since our o-line is hurting, why not put two backs in the backfield to help with blocking?
- The playcalling is seriously hurting us. Where are the screens? Where are the deep balls? Why do we ALWAYS hand off on 1st and 10? Why doesn’t Durant roll out and throw? And so on.
- Our run defence is not good enough. I don’t know what the issue is here, but we’re not closing up the middle of the field for some reason. Fix it.
- Teams aren’t surprised by our weird defensive schemes any more. We need more sustained pressure up front. Ricky Ray had lots of time to throw as the game went on. However…
- The defence is on the field far too long every game. We rely on big defensive plays to put up points. So far it’s kept us in games (minus last week), but the offence needs to help out.
- We have no return game.
- The Riders NEVER make adjustments. Whenever the team leads at the half, you can be sure that the opposing team will come out and stifle any momentum we had. Other teams are adjusting to our offensive/defensive schemes at half time, and we’re not doing the same. That’s why we can’t score in the second half. Well, that and the above reasons.
This team is better than Edmonton and BC; it needs to play up to its potential. Durant needs to be better. The game planning needs to be better. If things don’t get fixed, it’s going to be a long August.
OFFENSIVE STAR: #83 – ROB BAGG, WIDE RECEIVER
83 yards receiving on 6 catches
Bagg is going to be a star. If Durant could actually throw to the wide side of the field, he would be more effective. He’s not afraid to get extra yards by putting his head down and shedding tackles. Another great non-important receiver on a roster laden with many.
DEFENSIVE STAR: #48 – RENAULD WILLIAMS, LINEBACKER
Williams is growing into his role as one of the starting linebackers. He’s sold and dependable, but because the defence is on the field far too long every game, he and his amigos are getting run over in the second half.
SPECIAL TEAMS STAR: #30 – JAMIE BOREHAM, PUNTER
45.6 yard punting average; 8 punts for 209 yards (longest – 55)
Boreham gets this award solely because of the huge hit he put on one of the Eskimos returners. I love his hustle and hunger to hit guys.
NEXT WEEK: @ Calgary. The boys are on the road to play the resurgent Stamps at McMahon. The Riders never win at McMahon. Expect this one to be ugly.