Eskimos 26 - RedBlacks 20
The 2015 CFL seasoon came to a close as Mike Reilly and the Edmonton Eskimos hoisted the Grey Cup after beating the RedBlacks. While the end result was as many predicted (i.e. a close game won by Edmonton), I don't think many would have guessed exactly how we ended up at that result.
After Henry Burris almost threw a pick 6 on the first play of the game, Ottawa built up a quick 13 point lead just 6 minutes into the game. Things escalated so quickly I was actually expecting to see Chris Jones on the sidelines furiously trying to call Craig Reynolds to accept the Rider job before the offer was rescinded. But Edmonton didn't panic and by halftime they had fought their way slowly but surely back into the lead. It was a typical Eskimo game in that Reilly got the crap kick out of him but just kept on coming back for more. Don't forget the man didn't lose a game since returning from injury.
Edmonton's defense was able to contain Ottawa's arsenal of receivers. The top receiver for the RedBlacks on the night was the running back and none of the "big 5" topped 45 yards. Unlike Hamilton last week, the Esks were able to avoid giving up the big play and its tough to out duel a defense as good as the Esks without a few explosive plays.
I was actually a bit surprised by Henry Burris. I fully expected bi-polar Burris. I thought we'd either see Burris with a chip on his shoulder playing the game of his career or we'd see vintage Bad Hank and a chorus of "Henry" from the Rider faithful in attendance. What we got was somewhere in the middle. Burris made some plays and mostly avoided the bad plays... well except that one pass that was such a duck that I swear I saw a migrating mallard swoop in and try and mate with it. I think the loss pretty much cements that we will have to endure at least one more year of Burris. The good news is that there is no way he repeats the success he had this season so we should see a lot more of Bad Hank which has solid entertainment value. One Ottawa player I am very impressed with was William Powell. For being late season addition he sure looks like a seasoned vet out there. Bright future for him.
While it was a well played, hard fought game, for me it was missing the "wow play". Well other than the "wow! what in the hell was Dominion Lending thinking for subjecting us that god awful ukulele commercial!?!?" I'm not only less likely to do business with them than I was before, I have the urge to tell perfect strangers on the street not to deal with them.
Where was I before that rant? Oh yes, lacking the wow play. There really wasn't a wow moment that will lead the highlight package and be the talk of the water cooler this week. The fact that the Most Outstanding Canadian had 2 catches for 49 yards tell you a bit about the wow factor of the game. I mean it was a good game. I enjoyed watching it but just nothing extraordinary.
Thus ends another CFL season but be sure to stick around here throughout the coming months as I will be here all offseason with my witty remarks and highly biased views on things to help get you through the offseason. We have a GM to hire as well as a coach (maybe they will be the same guy). Free agency, the draft, lots to keep you up to date on. We will also be awarding the highly uncoveted Rider Prophet Awards in just 2 days,
Other random thoughts:
- I thought Fallout Boy were good at halftime but I'm a fan of their music so maybe I'm biased.
- I was surprised at home they really did nothing on the field... well with he exception of the laser show to start which was pretty good.
- If I am a football coach the last person I am giving the ball to when all you need to do is not fumble to win is Adarius Bowman. Seriously, there had to be someone with more reliable hands.