2016 Week 7 Recap

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That’s a scary picture for a Monday morning!

Let it be known that the fall of Henry Burris from 2015 Most Outstanding Player to has-been began at precisely 7:08 pm CST on Saturday, August 6 in Ottawa, Ontario when he answered this innocuous question from Matthew Scianitti of TSN:

“You had a real passionate, emotional message for your team before the game. Have you seen the kind of emotional reaction you wanted from them in the first half?”

Burris’ response?

“Well, all these guys at TSN always want to jump on me every week. And it seems like me, here I am, playing hard, trying to turn around every team in this league. For people out there, I’ve turned around four teams in this league. And I’ve helped do it here too. So for all those people talking junk out there, you can take that and shove it, all right? That’s all I’ve got to say.”

It’s not odd.  It’s the whiny, self-absorbed, selfish, me-me-me-me Henry Burris who steps out of the shadows every once in a while, reminding us that Smilin’ Hank is only part of what makes Henry Burris tick.

It’s the Henry Burris who reacted this way when booed by Stampeders fans back in 2011:

It’s the Henry Burris who’s a bit of a revisionist when it comes to his own playing history:

But not content with his halftime rant, Henry decided he had more to say post-game:

“It was at a point where something had to be said. Those guys can say whatever they want and are not being held accountable,” Burris said post-game.

“We played Toronto last week, it was my first game back and we had three days of practice and all I got asked was ‘am I worried?’ Things didn’t go right and I said I would be better this week but all the questions all week were ‘are you worried?’

“If I’m the defending [Most Outstanding Player] of this league, how come a rookie quarterback from Toronto is getting more positive press than the defending MOP? Do these guys know the game? That’s all I’m asking. I know they’ve been attacking me for years regardless of what I’ve done in this league and I just had to say something, and I did, but from this point I’m not going to talk about it. I made my point and I’m leaving it at that.

Really?? Glen Suitor has been blowing sunshine up your ass for YEARS, Henry.  Go look at Rob Vanstone’s columns, because he hasn’t had a bad word to say about you since you left Regina all those years ago. And the CFL on TSN panel ran out of superlatives last year when you deservedly won the Most Outstanding Player award after Zach Collaros went down.

(And yes, I did undercut your MOP win there.  You and everyone else knows that Collaros would’ve won if he wouldn’t have hurt his knee.)

But you know what, Henry?  You SUCKED last week.  You got BEAT by a rookie QB.  You helped your team LOSE.  Sports is a ‘what have you done for me lately?’ business.  That’s what you signed up for, and you know what?  You’ve made a pretty decent living out of it.

So that’s why I fully support what the CFL on TSN panel said last night after you cut into them for criticizing you, even if I didn’t think they needed to spend an entire segment on it.

I have to say that Milt said it best, Henry:  “You sound like a baby.”

HAMILTON AT WINNIPEG

The Bombers haven’t had great luck when it comes to weather this season.  For the third time in seven games, the Bombers got stuck in a weather delay.  This time, though, the delay occurred BEFORE the game even got underway.

For two and a half hours, a severe thunderstorm churned its way through the Winnipeg area, bringing a huge downpour and an amazing lightning show.  League officials weren’t sure what to do, as rescheduling a game in the CFL is rather unprecedented; the last time it was done was in the wake of the September 11th attacks in 2001.

Twitter was full of pictures of the teams trying to stay loose and get past the sheer boredom of hanging out in their dressing room.  The monotony was broken up a bit when the coin toss was done under the stadium in order to save time when it was finally time to start the game:

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Most comically, a DC-3 that was to do a flyby just before the game still rumbled through, the pilot obviously not notified that things were on hold down below.

But eventually the rain stopped, the storm moved on and the players hit the field for an abbreviated warm up.  The game start shortly after 10:00 p.m. CST, and ended sometime around 1:00 a.m.

For the Tiger-Cats, the game started around 11:00 p.m. Hamilton time, and it showed. They looked listless and absolutely stunned as the Bombers took it to them in the first half, getting out to a 34-0 lead at halftime that turned out to be insurmountable.

The Bombers’ receiving corps was a patched up group, as when Clarence Denmark is brought in on an emergency airlift, you know you’re in need of serious help.  But the makeshift group was solid, catching nearly everything that came its way.  Heck, even Clarence Denmark got a TD!

Jeremiah Masoli was downright awful.  He threw three interceptions, including one that was returned for a TD.  And the rest of the team played just like him, turning over the ball an additional two times, including a blocked punt.

Maybe Kent sensed it coming, as just before kickoff, he was seen trying to make arrangements to get the heck out of town.

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Just one thing, though, TSN.  Could we have a chat about the use of the word ‘adversity’?Sitting in a locker room playing cards while waiting for the rain to stop is not adversity.  It’s an inconvenience.

FINAL SCORE: Hamilton 11, Winnipeg 37

BC AT MONTREAL

Fourteen hours?  Eesh. My favourite is the guy in the bottom left on the still who’s just tuning everything out.

Anyway, the Alouettes and the Lions played in the first of two games on Thursday night. Based on the below quote, who do you think won?

This game was tied 10-10 at halftime.  In the second half, the Lions just took over.

It was not the most accurate night for kickers, with the Lions’ Richie Leone going 5/7 (that’s a lot of field goal attempts) and poor Boris Bede continued his struggles, missing 1 of 2 field goals for the Alouettes.

One of the things an astute observer had noted is that 300+ yard passing games have become the norm this year.  Jonathon Jennings had another 30o+ yard passing game on Thursday night.  (Kevin Glenn did not.)

Consider this:

Five games into the season, Reilly is averaging 385.2 yards per game, putting him on pace for 6,934 passing yards over the span of an 18-game season. To put that into perspective, only five times has a quarterback eclipsed 6,000 passing yards while only four different pivots have done it (Doug Flutie did it twice). The record is 6,619 set by Flutie in 1991, yet here’s Reilly flirting with the notion of 7,000.

This is part of the ‘new’ CFL: a focus on offence and taking defence out of the game.  Not only do I not like it, but it’s screwing with the record books.

As you can tell, I didn’t watch the Alouettes/Lions game, and therefore do not have anymore to say.

FINAL SCORE: BC 38, Montreal 18

SASKATCHEWAN AT CALGARY

It was close.

Until the fourth quarter.

And then the Stampeders literally ran away with the game.

More on that in a minute.

First, though, it was good to see that Darian Durant was no worse for wear:

But Rob Bagg went into my figurative dog house when he wouldn’t go out of bounds at one point, allowing a Calgary defender to come up behind him and knock the ball out of his hands.

You could see it coming.

Most frustrating was watching the Riders get into the red zone, only to have to settle for field goals.  (BTW, kudos to Johnny Mark for doing a good job given that Tyler Crapigna went down about 24 hours prior to game time.)  For instance, the Riders came out with a 7+ minute drive to start the third quarter, only to walk away with a field goal.

7+ minutes of possession and only 3 points.

That sucks.

The funny part of the game (well, not really funny in the HAHA sense) was that the Riders’ defence didn’t get beat by the big play; it got beat by Jerome Messam.

As Suits said, and I really hate to concur with Suits here, there’s nothing more demoralizing than knowing your opponent is going to run the ball and not being able to stop that.

And that’s exactly what the Stampeders did to the Riders in the fourth quarter.

Was this a better effort from the Riders than the previous week’s?  Absolutely.  But the result was still the same.

FINAL SCORE: Saskatchewan 15, Calgary 35

EDMONTON AT OTTAWA

Speaking of divos (divo = male form of ‘diva’):

If I recall correctly, Mike Reilly threw his helmet last game, too, and berated his offensive line.

This is becoming a problem.

Mike Reilly was referred to as both Rocky and Rambo by Rod Black during Saturday night’s telecast, as a high hit cut his forehead.

(I’m sure you’re not shocked that Rod Black couldn’t keep his Sylvester Stallone characters straight.)

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He went to the bench, where the trainers didn’t do anything but wipe it down, so when he came back for the next play, he had blood dripping down his face.  After going off again, as it was now 3rd down, the trainers wrapped gauze around his head, hence the Rocky/Rambo reference.  It was only during the second half that the trainers finally found a band-aid and the gauze was gone.

Who knew a cut to the forehead would require so much TLC?

This was a back and forth affair, although the Eskimos were playing catch up most of the game until the fourth quarter, when this happened:

But that was about the only play that went the Eskimos’ way.  The Eskimos’ top receivers did not have good days, dropping a number of passes that hit them right in the numbers. The offensive line got pushed around all night long, Mike Reilly did not have a 300+ yard passing night for the first time this season, and if not for K Sean Whyte, the Eskimos wouldn’t have been able to get back in this one in the fourth quarter.

The REDBLACKS (YUCK) weren’t exactly firing on all cylinders, either.  Henry Burris’ statistics look good, but the REDBLACKS (YUCK) stalled on a number of drives.  Chris Milo also managed to hit the upright again – this time it was the very top; it was nearly imperceptible except on replay, so good job by the officials to catch it in real-time.

The most frustrating aspect of this game was the number of penalties.  Look at this:

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Over 200 yards in penalties by the REDBLACKS (YUCK) – nearly 200 yards by the DEFENCE. Nearly every Eskimo offensive play was flagged.  There was pass interference, roughing the passer at least three times, and defensive holding a couple of times, which is odd.  And both teams were brutal with procedure and offside penalties.  We’re a quarter of the way through the season – these types of penalties just shouldn’t be happening with this much frequency anymore.

I’ve been as hard on the officials as anyone, but this game opened my eyes up to the fact that the nightly flag parade isn’t just the officials’ fault; the players need to take some responsibility, too.  In some respects, the sloppy play on Saturday night was embarrassing and we should expect better out of professional athletes.

But good on the REDBLACKS (YUCK) for finding a way to get through the penalties and take the game back late in the fourth quarter.  I guess.

FINAL SCORE: Edmonton 20, Ottawa 23

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