Monday, November 3, 2008

Monday Morning Sentimonies: Mixed Emotions

Riders 45 – Argos 38

Well I’ve got good news and bad news. The good news is that we will be hosting a home playoff game for the second year in a row. The bad news is that after watching our performance against the lowly Argos, I’m not sure I like our odds of postseason success.

Generally speaking, teams use the last game of the regular season as a final tune-up before the playoff run. Unfortunately I don’t consider throwing 4 INTs on offense and allowing the lowest scoring team in the CFL to put up 5 TDs on defense a tune-up… and if it is, may God have mercy on our souls.

I’m starting to sound like a broken record (or as Rod Black would say a scratched CD) but good lord, Michael Bishop sucks!!! I’m almost starting to think that I should stop insulting him since the Prophet legal department has informed me that kind of behaviour towards the mentally challenged can be considered a hate crime. Honestly… 4 picks!!! If I was the coach I would have cut him on the spot after the 3rd and beaten him with a sack of doorknobs after the 4th. And the topper was how he almost threw a 5th on the final drive. If Adrian Mays hadn’t been so busy interfering with Fantuz, he could have easily turned around and picked off Bishop and ended the game. Why in the hell was he throwing at that point!?!?!?!? We were well within FG range… just run the clock out and kick for the win. It’s such a simple concept that even a half wit like Bishop should be able to get it (but apparently not). Now some people will point to his 3 running TDs as a bright point… well sorry for expecting my starting QB to do more than run and throw INTs. At this rate we might as well declare Hugh Charles as our starting QB next week. He can run better and I’m guessing would throw far fewer INTs.

Here’s some more Bishop bashing (because you can never have enough):
  • After Bagg caught that 51 yard pass many were wondering why Bishop didn’t throw to him more often… the answer is simple - Bagg wasn’t wearing blue.
  • I heard that Media Consultant decided to dress up as Bishop for Halloween… he put on a Rider jersey and went around handing out footballs to anyone not wearing green.

Oh but the insults don’t end there… allow me to move on to our defense… you know the one that supposedly was one of the best in the league. What the hell?! Did you go on vacation until late in the 4th quarter? James Johnson has found his way back onto the hatred list with his terrible play of late. What happened to the Johnson from the start of the season who didn’t suck? And for Pete sake can we just all agree that the safety blitz doesn’t work and move on? The theory behind the play is simple… you trade off coverage in the secondary for increased pressure on the QB. Makes sense. Problem is when Gordon never gets to the QB all you are doing is giving up coverage downfield. It's almost as if he goes looking for a guy to block him! The best part of the game was halftime… while the Argos seemed to be able to score from everywhere else; they at least couldn’t score from the locker room. They probably just sat there and talked about how happy they were that they don’t have Bishop anymore.

Alright that’s enough ranting for today. We did win so let’s talk about the bright spots in the game…

  • Andy Fantuz and Weston Dressler… enough said.
  • How about Anton McKenzie? He has an amazing ability to pop the ball loose with a bone jarring hit when it matters most. And how about the hustle showed by Sebastian Clovis?
  • Neal Hughes and Stu Foord… it’s reassuring to know that no matter how deep of a hole Bishop digs us, we can always rely on the good ol’ Regina boys to bail us out.

What can you say about the Argos? They say good teams find ways to win… well I guess they are living proof that the opposite is also true. There is no way they should have lost that game but they found a way. First they let Clovis come through and block a Vanderjerk punt, then they let Anton pop the ball loose on a return and the final nail in the coffin was that car wreck of a fake punt attempt. The execution was pure comedy but the play call itself was ridiculous. Who direct snaps on 3rd and 10? 3rd and short maybe but… I’m willing to bet that that idiotic direct snap call on 3rd and 10 was just the Argo coaching staff’s way of saying thank-you for taking Bishop off their hands.

I suppose thanks are in line to the Calgary Stampeders for securing us a home playoff game. Unfortunately I didn’t see the game as I was away attending to some family matters this weekend. I’m told though that thanks are also in order for Paul McCallum for his wonderful kicking performance.

As with the majority of our wins, this one wasn’t pretty… but the end result is a solid 12-6 record and more importantly a home playoff game. Saturday can’t get here soon enough.

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