It’s been a long time since Rider fans haven’t had to care about the outcome of the division semi-finals… and you have to go back even farther to find a time when are reason for not caring didn’t involve an embarrassing season that was mercifully already over. That’s definitely not the case this time around. The Riders are on a bye week after finishing in 1st for the first time since the Fonz ruled the airwaves. Eeey!
With the Riders off this week awaiting the winner of the Stamps and Esks (and me really not caring about who wins this weekend), I get to devote more space then usual to mocking other teams. So let’s get right to it…
We’ll start in the east where the Ti-Cats host the Lions. The Lions and their winningest coach have gone from perennial lock to win the West to being relegated to squeaking into the playoffs via crossover. Meanwhile, the Ti-Cats have gone from perennial punch line to half decent team, which in the atrocious East, is good enough to coast to second place… unless of course you’re stupid enough to repeatedly start Quinton Porter. But seriously who would be that dumb? … Oh wait… awkward.
The way things are going for the Lions, they may have to spend this week’s practices implementing an all-wildcat offense… they certainly can’t count on anyone being able to actually throw the ball. Apparently Printers will start (despite his injured thumb), backed up by Lulay (despite his injured should), backed up by Champion (who must really suck to be healthy and still only the 3rd option behind an injured thumb and bad shoulder). I really think the Lions are covering up the severity of the injury to Printers’ thumb. Their whole QB situation reminds me a lot of this. I expect bad throws and repeated fumbles (much like when Printers was a Ti-cat). In a cruel twist of fate, the man who is famous for finding an endless supply of future all-star QBs will be done in by a QB stable that is either too injured or too stupid (and in some cases both) to salvage his season.
I never thought I’d see the day where in a battle between Buono and Bellefeuille, I would be favouring Bellefeuille and mocking Buono… it’s like I’ve stumbled into some sort of Bizarro world. What’s next? A “Bring Back James Johnson” post on my blog? (*Rest assured that the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Detroit Lions will win championships in the same year well before I consider writing such a post).
We then move onto the battle of Alberta, where the Esks take on the Stamps for the right to lose to the Riders next week. Henry Burris will no doubt be near tears over being passed over for both team MOP and Western All-Star nominations and we all know that when Burris doesn’t feel he’s getting enough respect, he goes out and tries to make himself look like a hero, which leads to the ball ending up in Reynolds’ hands very little and the defender’s hands quite a bit. It also leads to embarrassing displays such as this.
As for the Esks, I haven’t been sold on them from day 1. I just don’t think they are that good and their .500 record is very flattering. If their final 3 games of the season hadn’t been the Argos twice and the QB-less Lions, they would probably have missed the playoffs. Their pass coverage is as useful as Jesse Lumsden’s shoulder and that’s a concern when facing Burris. Not to mention that if you take away Fred Stamps, the Esks have a pretty sad looking set of receivers. Arkee Whitlock is a very lucky man. Any other coach would have cut him on the spot after his atrocious debut but Richie Hall (being the good guy that he is) stuck with him and is reaping the benefits of his decision. The Esks now have a credible running attack for the first time in the Maciocia era.
I picture this game being an offensive shootout with less defense than most All-Star games. Ray gives the Esks a legit shot at winning any game but I’m going to stick with my belief that the Esks just aren’t that good of a team and say I expect to see the Stamps back here next week.
And of course no mockery of other teams would be complete without talking about the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.
Their season may be over but the hilarious news just keeps flowing. Mike Kelly got an early start on pissing away next season by announcing that he wants to bring Michael Bishop to training camp next season. Look, we all know that I highly favour the move because Bishop is pretty much a lock to do something hilariously stupid on a weekly basis and making fun of those occurrences is way easier than putting effort into writing something else that is funny… but come on Mike Kelly, this is dumb even for you. If the season filled with interceptions that were only outnumbered by incompletion or completing only 8 passes when the season was on the line weren’t a red flag that maybe you should look elsewhere if your future plans involve winning… maybe the time he knocked himself unconscious on his own blocker should have been!!
The only thing that would make this situation funnier is if Kelly signs Bishop to an extension then turns around and announces the signing of Kerry Joseph the same day.
Enjoy a stress free weekend because next week is going to be off the charts as we head into the West Final in Saskatchewan.