Riders 13 – Bombers 25
Ok, this post comes to you without the benefit of me re-watching the game as I normally do or a night to sleep on my thoughts so if it comes across as more abrasive or incorrect than normal that’s why. I’ll preface this by saying I’m still very happy with our 8-2 team and am not calling for anyone’s head… well ok I’m only calling for a couple minor heads. But I still believe in this team.
That said... seriously Riders, hang your head in shame. That was a game we had no business losing and we found a way not only to lose but look generally embarrassing in the process. Admittedly the Bombers ramped up their effort and defensively played one hell of a game but if we can’t overcome a crappy team that shows a little heart then October is going be a long and painful month.
Obviously pressure was the story of the game. The Bombers brought it non-stop and we had no answer. Not coincidence that the last time our O struggle badly it was against the relentless blitzing of Montreal. It’s a weakness of this offense, opposing D Coordinators take note.
It was a perfect storm of a lot going wrong simultaneously. First was Patrick Neufeld. Good lord was he terrible!! Put Devin Tyler back in, put Tyler Seguin back there, hell put a Gatorade bottle back there. Can’t do much worse. Neufeld wasn’t the only one who struggle as we flatly lost the battle in the trenches. There were times when I’m sure Durant was praying for Edmonton’s OL to be blocking for him. The second was Durant… for all the progress he has made this season and all the great things he brings as a QB, the hot route remains his Achilles heel. He struggles mightily. His only real hot route is using his legs. Which is great once in a while but eventually you need to master the hot route to be effective as a QB. I am not laying this all on Durant or our lack blocking… which brings me to the third problem: play calling. This was the first game where I was not impressed with Cortez’s plays. We were just unable to adjust to the pressure. How you don’t even attempt a screen facing that much pressure is beyond me. Blame goes to everyone for a terrible offensive performance. Gotta be better. Gotta figure out pressure.
Defensively we actually played a great game but just became a victim of no support on O and mental mistakes like penalties or breakdowns… not to mention just nice catches like that Kelly one. They held Goltz to 12 passing yards through a large part of the game… 12! Hard to be mad at that. I will say this about D though, people will talk about Rey Williams getting hurt as a reason D broke down but honestly the guy has been invisible for many weeks now and even in this game was making wrong reads multiple times. Not sure if he’s nicked up but we need him to be an impact player not just existing out there. Overall though, D held up their end.
Special Teams have gone from a shining point of pride to a giant liability. Another fumble and the kick return. To their credit they got a nice fumble recovery by Black but overall they also need to be better.
The Bomber O was so bad all we needed to do was not make mistakes but we did. We did on special teams, we did on O. We let a terrible team dictate the pace of the game to us in their home park and that is not a good recipe for success.
Can’t dwell on this though. We are 8-2 and still in great position for the second half of the season. Gotta learn from this and make adjustments so that this doesn’t happen again.
My Riders lose, my Vikings lose… guess all I have to hope for now is my beloved San Francisco Demons of the XFL to not disappoint me. … wait what did you just say about the XFL??? Noooooooooooo.