When the 2012 CFL season ends, the Saskatchewan Roughriders might look back at what happened on the MacMahon Stadium turf Thursday night as a very key moment. It was over! The Riders led the game 35-17 with nine and a half minutes to play and showed no signs of imploding. On Twitter and Facebook, people were saying it was over before it was and we all know in the CFL, that a game isn't over until its over. Calgary learned that lesson last week against Montreal in a negative fashion and they learned it in a positive fashion this week as they storm back to beat the Riders in overtime.
The blame can go around. The defence became non-existent, the play-calling was less than stellar, Weston Dressler inexplicably dropped a pass that likely would have resulted in the least a game winning field goal attempt by Chris Milo at the end of the game, Chris Getzlaf dropped a touchdown pass in overtime. Darian Durant threw a costly interception. Its a game that the Riders should have won and won going away, but they didn't and as a result, they now face questions about what happened for the first time.
Just some early thoughts
--I loved the way the Rider offence was playing for three and a half quarters. They looked crisp and they were moving the football. There was some originality on first down and Darian was getting everyone involved as Justin Harper and Efrem Hill were key targets and made big catches.
--Kory Sheets continues to show us what a great find he was. Brendan Taman should be saluted for recruiting Sheets here as he is perhaps better than what Kenton Keith was. Taman should also be saluted for trading for Chris Patrick. Early on, he has been their best lineman and he has made some huge blocks to open up holes for Sheets.
--Nick Graham had another tough night. I have to wonder what his future is.
--After going on Sportscage and saying I would rather have Jon Cornish than Andrew Harris because Cornish is a threat catching balls out of the backfield, he looked horrible by dropping at least three. Thanks Jon!
--Nik Lewis. I HATE THAT GUY!!! You gotta respect what he's done and what he's doing though. As Chris Cuthbert said, "He's seemingly getting better".
--I will always maintain that CFL overtimes start at midfield. Its too easy to score in OT.
--Is John Hufnagel losing control of his team. What an undisciplined bunch? Hufnagel should tell Dmitri Tsoumpas that he has a spot on the bench for the Stamps next game as he cost them not once, but twice with stupidity.
--If Eddie Russ suffered an injury that will keep him out long-term, do you place a call to Lance Frazier. Lance is still in Regina and says he has been working hard to stay in game shape in case the phone rings. It might be worth it.
--Richie Hall has taken many knives for letting teams off the hook in the past. I am guessing Richie will take a lot of the blame for this one getting away as well.
--After the B.C. game, Chamblin said he hates giving up gift points like singles off of missed field goals and conceeding safeties instead of punting from the endzone. The Riders gave Calgary a gift two points on the high snap over Chris Milo's head. While a lot happened between that play and the end, if Milo gets the kick away, the Riders might still win. I wholeheartedly agree with Chamblin's stance on giving away freebies.
--I don't mind Jock Climie as the host of the CFL on TSN as he takes over with Dave Randorf on his way to London for Olympic duty.
--The loss sucks, but for 52 and a half minutes, this football team continued to show us that 2011 was just an anomaly. Chamblin knows his team let one get away tonight and he told Carm Carteri after that he doesn't expect that to happen again this year. If it does, look out!