Friday, July 29, 2011
The defence needs to be saluted. Calvillo had 356 yards, but was only 23 for 45 (Michal Bishop type numbers) with a TD. Whitaker ran seven times but for only 30 yards.
Penalties went both ways, but I think the Cats benefitted the most, with a number of facemask calls going their way.
All in all, a most enjoyable game, especially with the Cats beating the Alouettes at home in a game that means something
Crowd seemed decent, but I didn't hear the number.
Bakari Grant gets a start at wide receiver, along with Arland Bruce. Wunderkind Chris Williams and non-import Dave Stala are listed as the slots. No love for Marquay McDaniel as he, Thigpen, Carter and McKay are listed as backup slots or receivers.
Glenn starts at quarterback, Cobourne as running back and non-import Brown at fullback when they use one (hint almost never apart from short running plays to pick up a few yards). So that's five Canadian starters on offense.
Medlock kicks and punts.
Front seven is again the same. Baggs and Hickman are the ends, with Smith and non-import Steele in the middle.
Knowlton, Williams and Johnson are still the linebackers.
Non-import Hinds and Young are the corners, with Thomas and Smith as the half-backs and Shivers as the safety. That's two non-import starters on defence and seven total, the bare minimum.
The Alouettes go with an all-Canadian offensive line. Bourke and Perrett are the tackles, with Woodruff and Flory as the guards and Broduer-Jourdain in the centre.
Bratton and Watkins are the receivers. Richardson and Green are the slots. Calvillo is back at quarterback after being injured last week and Whitaker starts at running back. Non-import Carter is the starting fullback. That's six total Canadian starters on the offense.
On defence, Stewart and Bowman are the ends. Non-import and former Ticat Bekasiak and Wilson are the tackles.
At linebacker, outside it's Cox and Guzman with non-import Emry in the middle.
At corner, it's Estelle and Dix. Parker and Anderson are the halfbacks. Burlingtonian and obviously non-import Crawford is the safety. That's three starting non-imports on defence and nine total, two more than the minimum. Safe to say the Cats have worse Canadian talent than Montreal.
Whyte kicks and punts.
In fact, despite the gracious words in his final speech, Ford seemed to dismiss the deputants in an interview with TSN Radio host James Cybulski that was recorded Thursday morning or early afternoon.
After Ford made his CFL picks for the week, he was asked the best suggestion he had heard during the meeting.
Ford responded: “Actually, I haven’t heard anyone wanting to reduce. They just want to keep everything. So I don’t think people understand that if we don’t do anything with the $775 million (budget shortfall), you’re going to be looking at thousands of dollars of property tax increases.”
He added: “I haven’t heard any good suggestions on saving money. I’ve just heard ‘don’t cut this and don’t cut that.’”I'm guessing he picks the Argos every week, but I'm curious to see how he does for the other teams. Kudos to James Cybulski for scooping the rest of the media.
Thursday, July 28, 2011
Last I checked, Winnipeg is favoured by 2.5 at home which is frankly bizarre. Winnipeg is 3 and 1, BC is 0 and 4 and CFL teams have a massive advantage at home. I even made a post analyzing it. Favouring the Bombers by only 2.5 at home is basically saying on a neutral field, the game would be a tossup. The Riders managed to win last week, but you have to pick the Bombers based on just defence, who will be motivated by the death of their defensive lin coach. As far as I know, the Glassman, Buck Pierce is playing, so I'm not sure what the low spread is based on. Bombers by more than the spread.
Mosquito People 25, Riot People 17
Montreal at Hamilton
The Alouettes are on the road and favoured by 3.5 points. Quarterback Anthony Calvillo is apparently over his blurry eye problem (or is he?) and looked decidely mediocre last week against the Riders. The Cats have won two straight and the Alouettes have lost one. The Cats in recent years have been good at venerable Ivor Wynne and the Alouettes relatively good on the road. I'm really tempted to pick Montreal to win by less than the spread. Instead, I'll be a bit of a homer (both in a sense of being a Ticat fan and also knowing home teams have a big advantage) and pick Hamilton by a rouge.
Ticats 29, Bird People 28
Toronto at Edmonton
The Argos seem to rarely play at home these days. No Lemon Party this week, as Cleo Lemon is injured, so Dalton Bell has the reins (I wonder who is the third string QB this week?). Edmonton is 4 and 0 and at home and favoured by 8.5. Pretty easy.
Frigid People 35 Suck People 21
Calgary at Saskatchewan
This is tough. The Riders are at home, which has to count for something. Calgary is only 2 and 2 and favoured by 2.5, but haven't really impressed me, offensively or defensively. Burris looks tired and old and inaccurate. The Riders apart from last week have sucked utterly. If Sasky goes down early, they're done. My heart says the Riders, but my brain says Calgary. I'll go with the Stamps.
Oil People 25, Combine People 24
McDaniel didn't play last week, but I never heard what his injury was. Maybe I wasn't paying attention. Anyways, he's probably likely to play on Friday now, despite apparently being out of favour.
Update: McDaniel is on the game day roster as a backup of Chris Williams.
Wednesday, July 27, 2011
All I can remember so far is that tallboys of Canadian and Coor's Light are $8.75. Note that you could go before the game to the Prince Edward Tavern and get a pint for significantly cheaper. I'll try on Friday's game to get the prices for as many other things as I can, to allow a year to year comparison. I'll try and include info from the Roger's Centre and the Moncton game too.
Tuesday, July 26, 2011
The Cats best chance was Chris Young with an 189 yard and TD receiving game. Maybe if he went over 200 yards or had an extra TD he would have had a chance. Pierce's numbers were quite good, 22 for 27 for 361 yards and 3 TDs. That's a pretty awesome completion percentage so I can't really fault the pick. Philosophically, it is difficult for a receiver to beat out a quarterback for this award. All four winning quarterbacks have to have a mediocre week and the receiver's numbers have to be stellar.
Just in case you wanted to know how many awards each team has won, Winnipeg has five, Montreal and Edmonton have four, and BC, Calgary and Hamilton have one a piece.
Monday, July 25, 2011
Nobody is more shocked than me. Difficult to argue that Fred Stamps is the best receiver in the CFL. Good defence too. I'm not sure how long it will last, but the Eskimos could end up with a ridiculous improvement in win total year over year.
Too early to jump off the band wagon after a single loss, albeit one at home. I'm sort of assuming that Anthony Calvillo will be able to play this week. The Alouettes were not terrible with McPherson in at quarterback and made the game against the Riders close at the end.
What's up with the Alouettes not selling out their stadium? I can understand the opening being on that weird Moving Day (aka Canada Day) and not selling out, but a 3 and 0 team. Weird. At least that adds more data points for my best road drawing team post.
Tempting to put them ahead of Montreal, but the Bombers aren't quite there yet. Impressive defence will keep them in games, especially in this year of mediocre CFL quarterbacks.
Winning on the road in BC is never easy for an EST team. Offense looked good in the first half, and the defence looked good at the end shutting down Travis Lulay. Good depth at import receiver and fabulous linebackers. The question remains whether they can beat a team with a winning record. You can't play winless teams every week.
Looked smelly at home against the Eskimos. Henry Burris is not looking like his usual form. Defence also mediocre. Fortunately for the Stampeders, there's worse teams in the CFL.
Win a game on the road and suddenly you're no longer the worse team in the CFL. Not a great team by any means, but at least Durant seems like he's a quarterback again and there's receiving production from Dressler and Getzlaf.
Cleo Lemon left the last game early due to tooth problems and the Argos haven't won since the first game of the season. A good defence means they probably won't descend into total suckitude, but it isn't looking good for matching their 9 and 9 record of 2010.
Still winless and lost at home last game. Not a good combination. Buono should have switched to general manager only a while ago, if only to have someone to blame and fire. If the Lions keep honking, Buono really has to go totally. Also to those whose power rankings last week had BC significantly higher, you're idiots.
Saturday, July 23, 2011
Amazing game by Chris Williams last night. Eight catches for 189 yards and a TD, a veritable festival of YAC yards and broken tackles. Williams now leads the team with 250 yards receiving and you have to think he's a got an excellent shot at offensive player of the week with the most receiving yards in a single game this year. Will he be the only Cat to get 1000 yards receiving this year? Unless Bruce and Mann step up, maybe.
Speaking of Bruce, he didn't have a bad game, with four catches for 56 yards, including a critical catch late in the game.
Stala only caught three passes for 37 yards but two were TDs. The unsportsman like conduct penalty for punting the ball into the stands after the first TD was a bit unfortunate. Hopefully the Cats can get way ahead in a game and Stala can get a TD and do something crazy.
Glenn played well, going 21 for 31 for 334 yards, 3 TDs and no interceptions. He ran for 16 yards on 3 carries as well. Did what needed to be done at the end.
Cobourne gained 100 yards on 14 carries, plus 2 TDs, including the monster one at the end of the game. I'm not sure if that's his first 100 yard game as a Tigercat, but it may well be.
The defence generally played well, especially late in the fourth to lock things down. Geroy Simon was kept to 78 yards on 5 catches. Only one sack, a pretty one by Jamal Johnson, but Lulay had a lot of pressure all game.
Special teams was good, apart from Medlock missing his first fieldgoal, a surprisingly short one. Excellent punt coverage too, with the Lions only getting 34 yards on seven points. Ouch.
All in all, a great game on the road by the Ticats.
Friday, July 22, 2011
Hamilton at BC
This is a tough one. BC has won no games, while the Cats have won one last week. The CFL is a league with a major home field advantage, so generally bad team versus bad team should mean picking the home team automatically. BC is favoured by 3.5 points. The Ticats did look like they were hitting on all cylinders. A bit of a contrarian and homer pick, I'll pick Hamilton in a close one. BC hasn't show me much at all yet.
Hamilton 27, BC 24
Winnipeg at Toronto,
The Bombers have an awesome defence and the Toronto offense led by quarterback Cleo Lemon frankly smells. I don't think either team is particularly good and the Bomber quarterback situation is pretty murky with injuries. The Argos are favoured by 3 at home. I'm going to say the Argos win, but don't cover in a low scoring game.
Toronto 17, Winnipeg 15
Edmonton at Calgary
The Eskimos are hot, winning three straight. The Stampeders have been somewhat meh with a 2 and 1 record. Calgary at home is favoured by 3 points. Seems like odds making for the CFL consists of taking the home team by three. But I digress. I don't think Edmonton is really that great and will lose a few games this year, including this one.
Calgary 35, Edmonton 29
Saskatchewan at Montreal,
Not looking good for the Riders, Saskatchewan has lost all three games, looking as bad last week in Hamilton as the average woman at last call at the Prince Edward Tavern on Barton Street on a Friday night. The Alouettes have won three straight, are favoured by 11 and are at home. They'll cover. Easily.
Montreal 43, Saskatchewan 13
If the Cats had a better record going into the second game the attendance might have been somewhat higher. One problem for the Cats is that the Rider game is traditionally well attended and the 22,245 last week was not a good number for a Saskatchewan game.
The battles over the location of the new stadium is likely having a depressive effect on attendance. A lot of people were angry over how it played out and it could take a couple of years (less if the Cats were to win the Grey Cup) for that ill will to subside.
Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Former non-import defensive tackle, Jermaine Reid won the best Canadian award with four tackles and a sack. I guess the Cats thought that Eddie Steele could fill the roll of starting non-import defensive tackle for a lot cheaper and so far he has.
Winning by 30 points and only giving up 3 could often warrant two awards, but not this week. Are the Ticats historically underrepresented in the CFL Player of the Week awards? Something worth analyzing.
How many weeks was Montreal ranked number one last year. A fuck load. How many times will they be ranked number one this year. A fuck load. Playing an excretable 0 and 3 Saskatchewan at home this week, number one next week too.
I'm not sure what's happened, or if it will continue, but the Eskimos are a good team for now.
The Stampeders don't seem like a great team this year, but in the land of the castrated, the one balled man is king. Plus they beat Winnipeg in a close one on the road.
This seems like a bit of a home pick, but presently the Bombers have a great defence and are on their third string quarterback going into game four. The Cat defence is good, plus the Ticats have actually scored more points than they have allowed despite a losing record. Kevin Glenn is effectively a one balled man compared to some of the quarterbacks starting this week.
Awesome defence, no quarterback. Against half of the teams in the CFL, that's enough.
Has won a game, has a credible defence. Starting Cleo "the Party" Lemon.
Not Saskatchewn. Has built in advantage against EST teams.
Lose a bunch of good Canadian receivers and the wheels come off. Defence also now mediocre.
Monday, July 18, 2011
* If you can't make one tackle on a defensive back without totally blowing out your knee, maybe professional football isn't for you.
Saturday, July 16, 2011
Import Chris Williams is at one wideout spot, with non-import Carter at the other. Mann and non-import Stala are listed as the slots. Bakari Grant and Marquay McDaniel are listed as backups, so expect to see them in five receiver sets. Glenn still starts at quarterback, Cobourne at running back and non-import fullback Darcy Brown plays in the situations when the Cats aren't using five or six receivers. So that's six starting imports on offense.
Saskatchewan hasn't put up their line up yet on their website, which seems a bit strange.
The game is live on the NFL Network.
The front defensive seven is the same. Baggs and Hickman as the defensive ends and Smith and non-import Steele inside. Knowlton, Williams and Johnson as the linebackers.
Non-import Hinds and Young are the corners, with Dennis and Smith as the defensive halfbacks. Shivers is the safety. That's two defensive starters for eight total, one above the minimum.
Friday, July 15, 2011
Toronto at Montreal
Last I checked Montreal is favoured by ten. That seems generous to Toronto, but the Argos defence is pretty good. Considering how the Alouettes have rolled early in season, I can't see things changing. Alouettes get a reasonable lead going into the second half and then expand it.
Alouettes 32, Argos 16
Sasktchewan at Hamilton
The Ticats are favoured by 2.5 points at home, which since home teams are generally favoured by 3 points, means on a neutral field Saskatchewan is the slghtly better team. Arland Bruce or whatever you want to call him is out and Marquay McDaniel is back catching balls. Considering Bruce has caught four balls in two games, that's not as concerning as it would be normally. Chris Getzlaf is supposed to be back in as an import receiver for the Riders, which is good for them considering they don't have non-import receivers Fantuz or Bagg available. This could be construed as a homer pick, but I don't think the Cats are that bad to lose three games in a row early on.
Ticats 27, Riders 20
BC at Edmonton
The 2-0 Eskimos are only favoured by 2.5 points at home against the 0-2 Lions. I don't think that's fair to the Eskimos, but I'm going to go against the grain and go with the Lions. I've become less and less impressed with Kavis Reed's coaching abilities over the years; to me he's a good example of failing upwards. Buono isn't the superstar coach he once was, but he's no Bart Andrus.
Lions 25, Edmonton 23
Thursday, July 14, 2011
Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Considering the suck of the Ticat receivers this year apart from Mo Mann, what's going on with McDaniel? Is he really injured? Are the coaches still mad about the fumble in last year's playoff game? Do the new receivers playing in place of McDaniel have incriminating photos of Marcel Bellefeuille and Bob O'Billovich?
In a recent Scratching Post entry, Drew Edwards reports that "M. McDaniel filled in at wide receiver for Bruce and Belton Johnson was in at left tackle for Brian Simmons." So will McDaniel play on Saturday? McDaniel has never been my favourite receiver, but is an excellent option when Bruce has a couple of guys on him.
Afeter looking up the stats for last year's playoff game, I checked how former non-import receiver Chris Bauman is doing this year in Edmonton. Apparently he's injured (although in the CFL, if you're not on the nine game list, who knows if you're really injured) and hasn't caught a pass.
Pretty hard to argue against Montreal being the top ranked team.
I'll pick the Eskimos over the Bombers, just because they have a more durable quarterback. Buck Pierce could explode at any time.
Their offense is anemic, but early on a tough defence can do wonders. I don't know if they will be here a the end of the season, but I didn't think the Argos would finish at 500 last year either.
Normally I would have put Calgary ahead of the Argos, but the Argos beat them on the road on week 1. Henry Burris is getting a bit long in the tooth and the Stampeder offensive line hasn't been great so far. Cleo "the Party" Lemon is still mediocre.
This might be a bit of a homer's pick, but one of the three 0 and 2 teams has to be ranked highest. Bruce has to break out some time. Hopefully.
Not having Canadian receivers Fantuz and Bagg available this year has to be hurting the RIders ratio wise. Maybe Durant isn't the third best player in the CFL.
I don't think BC will necessarily end up as the team with the worst record in the CFL, but they haven't looked great so far. Probably not going to playing in Vancouver for the Grey Cup.
I caught the first episode of the inside the Argos show, the Extra Yard. I kept wondering if the narrator was the old guy from the Labatt's Blue commericals. I also wondered how many cigarettes do you have to smoke to sound like that guy. Also I was surprised to see that Cleo Lemon is actually kind of cocky, which surprised me, considering he's Cleo Lemon. The show was actually somewhat compelling and it was tough watching players being released.
Saturday, July 9, 2011
The offensive line is the same as last week, imports at tackle, Simmons and Jimenez, non-imports at guard, Dyakowski and Rottier and also at centre with Hage. Hopefully he gets the snap count right this week.
One change at receiver, import Chris Williams is in after the other new guy got injured. Is Marquay McDaniel even still on the team or injured? I have no clue and I'm leaving that as an exercise to the reader. Import Bruce is the other receiver. Hopefully he catches more than two passes this week and doesn't get any stupid penalties. Mann and non-import Stala are back as the slots.
Glenn is back at quarterback, with Cobourne as the running back and Darcy Brown as the fullback. That's five Canadian starters on offense.
The defensive line is the same as last week, Baggs and Hickman at end, and Smith and non-import Steele plugging the middle.
Linebackers are again the same. Knowlton, Williams and Johnson.
Corners again are non-import Hinds and Young. Dennis and Thomas are the half-backs and Shivers is the safety. Two Canadians on defence.
Medlock punts and kicks.
For Edmonton on the offensive line, Coston an import is the left tackle and non-import Wojt is the right tackle, differing from the Cats dual import scheme. Kabongo and Mac grad Koch are the guards and Fiacconni is the centre.
Henry and non-import Nowacki are the wide receivers, with Stamps and Bowman the slots. Porter (who?) is the running back with non-import Betrand as the fullback. That's six Canadians on offense.
On defence the Eskimos are listed as using a 3-4 scheme. Peach and Sykes are the ends, with former Argo draft pick Legare as the nose tackle (I'm too lazy to put in the accents).
Munoz and Hill are the outside linebackers (I think). Davis and Sherritt are in the middle.
Williams and Bradley are the two corners. Brown and former Ticat Thompson are the defensive halfbacks. Alexander is the non-import safety. That's two Canadian starters on defence and eight total, one more than the minimum.
Import and former Alouette Duval punts and kicks.
Sunday, July 3, 2011
Glenn's performance was pretty poor overall, 18 for 31, for 187 yards, with one TD. The three picks were the problem. Interestingly, Buck Pierce had a terrible game looking at the stats.12 for 26 for 151 yards? That's Cleo Lemon territory right there. Pierce did have one TD matching his one interception toss. Frankly having those stats and winning the game is a minor miracle.
Mann had an awesome day with 9 catches for 120 yards. Mann was moved to the middle this season and obviously likes it. Every other receiver had a mediocre day. Bruce and Stala only catching two balls apiece isn't very good. Cobourne had a decent day, 75 yards on 15 runs, plus 36 yards receiving on five receptions. Medlock was three for three on field goals, so you can't complain about that.
On defence the Cats had five sacks total. People say sacks aren't a good stat, but five means you're doing something right. Linebacker Jamal Johnson had the best game with seven tackles and two sacks.
So basically it came down to Glenn's interceptions and not being quite good enough on offense with regards to red zone performance. If the Cats can't beat Winnipeg at home, I don't see how well they can do against the likes of Montreal.