Monday, October 7, 2019
Something To "Mitch" About
God bless the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. They try so hard and they keep falling on their face. Those of us in Saskatchewan enjoy it so much and we did again Saturday night as the Riders moved into first place. Yes, on October 7, your Saskatchewan Roughriders are in first place after a playoff-style 21-6 win.
Once it was over, it had to be done.
Chris Streveler showed once again why you can't count on him as he made some brutal second half turnovers and as a result, the Bomber ship continues to sink and everyone in that organization knows it.
--Just some thoughts on Saturday night
Shaq Evans is starting to convince more and more people that he is the best receiver in the CFL right now. Sorry Brandon Banks! What a weapon he has become. Many didn't think highly of the rookie receiver last year because of his constant drops. Some wondered if he would make this team coming out of training camp. What a difference a year makes! One has to wonder if he will seek NFL employment. I would be shocked if the UCLA product didn't. As Jordan Williams-Lambert will attest, it ain't easy trying to make a team down there at that position.
The Riders defence was spectacular, but has anyone noticed Andrew Harris has done squat since returning to the Bombers lineup. Hmmmmm!!! Has he scored a touchdown since returning?
I didn't see it live, but like many of you I cringed when I saw Cody Fajardo go ass over teakettle over top of the Winnipeg bench. That could have been ugly. Could have? With all apologies to Isaac Harker, this team's chances take a mammoth hit if Fajardo should go down.
After asking on Twitter where he and his wife should spend the day Sunday before she flies home, Fajardo said he was off to Moose Jaw to visit the Spa, the Tunnels and Deja Vu. Here's hoping the couple had a chance to enjoy each other and the day. I'm guessing they didn't go to the Pats-Warriors game. I really think he wants to be a part of this team moving forward. The question is what will the price be. The pricetag keeps going up. How can you not love the guy? If and when he signs, he will be a popular man across this province on the dinner circuit this winter!
Jon Ryan and the punt team were victimized by some bad bounces. Two of his kicks should have gone out of bounds inside the 10, but the ball decided to tightrope the sidelines on one kick and just cross the other side of the pylon on the other. If you are criticizing the fact there were two more "rouges", just zip it.
Cam Judge is a shoo-in as the team's top Canadian. With Cory Greenwood out in Calgary, I have to wonder if he might be the West nominee. Yeah, I would guess Andrew Harris would win the honor in Winnipeg, but will he win the West nomination after what happened. Judge and AC Leonard blasted Streveler with some mammoth hits on Saturday. I don't know if I have ever seen a defense have as many clean hits on a quarterback as I have seen the Riders defence get this year. I don't know what Jason Shivers is seeing, but I like it.
I know Khari Jones is doing great things in Montreal, but if I had to vote for the Coach of the Year right now, I am voting for Craig Dickenson. I think a lot of people thought he was basically gifted this job after the late departure of Chris Jones. I knew Dickenson would make the most of his opportunity and he has. He loves his players and they love him. He allows a mistake or two to be made, he has patience and he is always preaching positives. The best choice was made and credit to that and many other things should go to Jeremy O'Day.
Speaking of Jones and Dickenson, I said it a few weeks ago and I will say it again now. These will be the two coaches on the sidelines at MacMahon Stadium when the Grey Cup is played, 10 years after the 13th man debacle on that field when the GC was last played there, the same two teams will do it again.
--I am OK with CFL tripleheaders on Saturday, but admittedly it is tough to watch three games when the Riders are at home. I saw very little of the Calgary-Montreal game as I was getting ready for the game at Mosaic and I would have seen very little of the Toronto-BC game when I got home. Knowing the score while driving home, I elected to watch McDavid and the Oilers. More on them in a moment.
--Have the Argos quit on Corey Chamblin? As I said, I didn't see any of the Argos-Lions game. Having heard the score on the way home from Mosaic, the only question was how bad would it be. There are good players on that team, but something is inherently wrong. It doesn't make the job of marketing that team any easier.
--Can the Lions still make the playoffs? What a story that would be! I'll be interested to see the Riders game there in a couple of weeks.
--I just can't buy the Bo Levi Mitchell-Minnesota story, but it wouldn't surprise me if it were true. If it is, it says a lot about the NFL fraternity. The Vikings didn't want someone who could compete for the starters job, they just wanted someone to "compliment" Kirk Cousins and not create a controversy, Is Kirk's ego that fragile? Is the Vikings braintrust that dense? Mitchell has won wherever he's gone. He might be a better QB than Cousins at a lot cheaper price. We know Bo loves himself and the story he told is somewhat wild. As I said, I can't believe it, but I can't entirely throw it away either.
--The Edmonton Oilers are 2-0, Connor McDavid looks like he is 100 percent and James Neal has two goals in two games. Life is good!! (for now!)
--I'm surprised all programming on TSN and Sportsnet wasn't pre-empted for a lengthy investigation into the Leafs collapse on Saturday night against Montreal. Have I mentioned how sick I am of Toronto already and we haven't even played a week. Is Auston Matthews the Hart Trophy winner yet?
--Did Don Cherry say Fredrik Andersen is the best goalie in the world on Saturday night? Someone said he had. I love the old guy, but his time has come. Brian Burke can take the torch from Grapes and be just as bombastic and controversial.
--I was somewhat shocked to come out of the Brandt Centre Friday night and see that the U of R Rams were losing to UBC. Stability at quarterback is needed and the Rams haven't had that since Noah Picton was lost to the team last year with a foot injury. Since then it has been Seb Britton, Josh Donnelly, Colton Hippe, Donnelly, Britton and on Friday, it was Bryden O'Flaherty. From all accounts, it took him three quarters to get his game going and then when the Rams seemed to be putting it together, Aldo Galvan missed another what should be makeable kick meaning what could have been a drive for a game-winning FG ended up being one where a TD was needed instead.
Surprisingly at 1-5, the Rams can still make the playoffs if they get some help and beat Manitoba and Alberta. The coaching staff needs to do some work over the next couple of weeks to make sure guys don't check out after what has been a tough season with all losses except for one being games they could have won. Until you've been eliminated, you have to keep going. Steve Bryce and company have two weeks to finish about how they want to end the season.
--I just can't pick NFL games this year. Can you? I am guessing there are already a bunch of Survivor pools that have come to an end for people, Indy over KC at Arrowhead? The Raiders over the Bears? Denver beating the Chargers? BAHHHH!!! At least Green Bay delivered one to Dallas, but they just about blew that. It leaves the Patriots and 49ers as the only unbeatens with San Francisco playing tonight against Cleveland. Could it be that the Patriots are the last team to lose? I know----shocking!
--I'm a big Earl Thomas fan from his days in Seattle, but Earl needs to sit down for a few weeks after his brutal headshot on Pittsburgh's Mason Rudolph. Thomas had the audacity to say he thought he had just grazed Rudolph's helmet and he wasn't trying to hurt him. Cmon Earl! I don't know what was worse---the fact Thomas wasn't kicked out or the fact Rudolph had to walk back to the room because the cart wasn't operational. Could you not have gotten an ambulance? That kid was knocked into another dimension and he had to wobble off the field? That's disgraceful
--I just don't see anyone beating the Houston Astros in the playoffs. The only way they get beat is if someone can outpitch Gerrit Cole and Justin Verlander and win a 1-0 or 2-1. game. The Yankees, Twins and Rays can't do that and I don't think anyone in the National League can either.
--It is so sad to see major cuts coming at Sports Illustrated. Like a lot of you, I grew up with that magazine. I might still have many sitting somewhere in the house. The stories and pictures that have come from that publication over the years are gold. Its the way the industry is going though and that's a damn shame for journalism as a whole.
--That's all I got. Have a great week!