Riders 20 – Eskimos 23
The 2011 Roughrider season ended in the most fitting fashion possible on Friday... with an embarrassing blunder. That play typified what kind of year it was for the green and white. Considering that it was meaningless game for us against a team fighting tooth and nail for a home playoff game, we actually turned in a decent performance... or maybe Edmonton just sucked. Either way it was a fair fight (well aside from Adarius Bowman who accounted for over half of the Esks offense).
In no particular order (other than the order they popped into my head) here are some thoughts I had on the game
- Nice to see Getzlaf get 1000 yards and 10 TDs. I still marvel at just how amazing he could be if he learned to catch consistently
- Speaking of catching consistently, evidently Richie Hall still assumed Adarius Bowman was incapable of it.
- Look closely on all of Bowman’s big plays and you will see Sean Lucas in the trail position. He is flat out awful! I can’t believe we signed him to a new 6 figure salary this year when he was playing like this last year too.
- The crossing route remains the natural enemy of the Richie Hall defense. After all these years he still hasn’t figured it out.
- Wes Cates had his customary strong performance to end the season. He had me chanting “Four more years!”
- Sadly given how in a meaningless game we gave old man Cates all the carries, none to West and didn’t even dress Bernard... I think we might be planning on starting him for 4 more years.
- On that note, glad to see Cole Bergquist get his customary randomly placed series per half. Those 5 reps really let us get a good evaluation of him.
- As for our other QB, while he did accomplish something that had eluded us since September (a passing TD, as sad as that is) I still think we are wasting our time with him. He will never be a starting calibre QB. If you look back on his last 2 starts, Dinwiddie has 2 plays throw it deep or run. He has no short or medium game, and he’s not very good at the long game that he insists on relying on.
- I have to admit though that Dinwiddie did provide me with the most entertaining series of events from that game. First he scrambles out and gets run out of bounds and slips and falls on his ass. Then he reams out his receivers (rightly so) for not attempting to get open. His receiver then gives him a shove to the face and the 2 have to be separated. Next series, Dinwiddie forces a pass into double coverage looking for Baker... comedy writers couldn’t come up with stuff this good.
- The one position where do seem willing to give young guys some meaningful playing time is O-line. Neufeld and Groh both got significant reps which was great to see.
And thus ends an awful season that we all hope to wipe from our memory. We have an eventful offseason coming our way, we need to sort out our GM position, hire a new coach, pursue some of our free agents (Freeman, Fantuz and Shologan top the list) and begin to build this team back into a contender (and not just one for blooper of night honours).
Thanks for sticking with me through another season and please stick around throughout the offseason because I will be posting regularly right through to next year.