“I’m Falling Apart” is the only line I remember from ‘The Time Traveller’s Wife’ trailer – and it’s not even a line from the script. Too bad that reviews for the film aren’t very good; it was a great book. I suspect part of the problem is that fact that Eric Bana plays Henry. I’m not a fan.
Whatever. I’m going to travel back in time and review last week’s Rider implosion at the hands of the not-so-mighty BC Lions.
My sister and I watched the game by ourselves last Friday night. By the midpoint of the second quarter, I was fiddling with my iTouch. By the third quarter I was immersed in a number of crossword puzzles. By the fourth quarter, well, I didn’t really care anymore.
After three Lions turnovers in the first quarter, the Riders were only up 7-0. Time of possession was about 12 minutes for the Lions and 3 minutes for the Riders. Those numbers gave me a bad feeling, and that feeling never went away.
The Riders sucked in all three phases of the game. The defence had as many holes as a slice of Swiss cheese (sorry I can’t come up with a better comparison). The offence moved more backwards than forward. And the special teams would have been better had they remained on the bench.
I know, I know. The Riders are 3-3, tied for 1st place in the West. I should shut up ’cause things aren’t so bad! Besides, we beat the Grey Cup champs last week!
But mark my words: there are storm clouds on the horizon.
This team is shuffling along. There is no real leader. The coaching is becoming more and more suspect as things go along (the playcalling was horrible, the defensive schemes bordered on insane, and the special teams play was atrocious). The players are talking to the media about other players (see Wes Cates’ comments on Durant). There is no sense of urgency in practice (see various practice reports on RiderFans.com). More and more people are blaming the Riders’ increasing ineptitude on the absence of GM Eric Tillman.
I couldn’t agree more.
If Tillman was around, there would be accountability. Period. The team could be held more accountable. I don’t know why, but the Regina media keeps protecting the team rather than asking tough questions about the impact that Tillman’s absence is having.
I’m convinced that the Riders current problems are due to poor management and poor coaching. I could give a million examples of why this is the case. Look at the QBs. How in the world is Steven Jyles #2 on the depth chart? He’s useless, and is holding up the development of the other QBs. Jyles is as good as he’s ever going to be (and I think the same can be said of Durant). Demote him or release him and put Dalton Bell as #2. He’s been here long enough and deserves a chance. Besides, why sign these guys is you’re not going to use them? We need to develop a QB; why not give one of the young guys a shot?
OFFENSIVE STAR: #6 – ROB BAGG, WIDE RECEIVER
5 catches for 120 yards and 2 TDs
Another week, another Canadian receiver has a coming-out party. Too bad the Riders couldn’t have won to help Bagg celebrate his great game.
DEFENSIVE STAR: #31 – SEAN LUCAS, LINEBACKER
9 tackles, 1 interception
Lucas has quietly been putting together a stellar season in the Riders’ linebacking corps. I don’t want to think about how much worse our run defence would be if Lucas wasn’t in the middle.
SPECIAL TEAMS STAR: NO ONE
These guys shouldn’t have set foot on the field. Gerran Walker runs backwards more than forwards (WTF!?!?!?!?) and can’t field a football to save his life. Don’t believe me? His yard total for the night was MINUS 7, with an average of NEGATIVE 2.3 yards per carry. I have NEVER, EVER seen a negative yard total on a Rider stat sheet. And just to rub salt in the wound, the line allowed a CONVERT to be blocked (when the hell was the last time that happened?).
I give up.
NEXT WEEK: VS. HAMILTON The Riders are gonna get run over this game – unless they make some changes to their defensive schemes. But after defensive coordinator Gary Etcheverry’s defensive comments, where he basically said that statistic don’t matter, I doubt that’ll happen. I wouldn’t be surprised if Hamilton wins this one.