Report Card vs Winnipeg
QUARTERBACK - C
Full credit to Bethel-Thompson, he had a much better second half. He ended up with decent stats 314 yards, 2 touchdowns, 73 percent completion. BUT I watched the game, and he buried the Argos in the first half. Two terrible interceptions and just no momentum at all. He still has lots of arm, but he got lucky on the Banks touchdown, as he underthrew a wide-open Banks. He needs to play a full game to beat a good team. Frustrating. Props to his TD saving tackle on the Banks interception.
WIDE RECEIVER - B
Banks and MBT continue to work some chemistry, but he is not always being used correctly. The KGJ was money once again. Banks was all over the place tonight, he had an early drop on a big play, made a monster play on the int/td to start the second half and coughed up a killer turnover in the redzone. The mystery of the DaVaris Daniels continues, as he is the highest paid member but is not the central part of the offensive game plan. I don’t know what to make of it, except his catch per dollar ratio is excellent.
RUNNING BACK - A
Harris was a force of nature tonight; for a guy who clearly is being held together with duct tape and will, he is an absolute leader for the Argos. It was by far his best game as an Argo as he totaled 111 yards and he clearly desperately wanted to beat his old team. His spot on the short yardage play in the red zone was garbage. I wished he had gotten more redzone touches. He was championship level tonight.
OFFENSIVE LINE - B
A solid game for the unit, as they were able to get real push against Winnipeg for running lanes and the off-tackle runs were successful. The pass protection was pretty good all game against a formidable front 7 for Winnipeg, but they still have some issues when the defense knows it is a pass and can pin their ears back and fire off the ball. A terrible snap in the redzone at the end didn’t cost the game the team, but it could have.
DEFENSIVE LINE - B+
The line played well all game, keeping the running game under 50 yards, and forcing Collaros to scramble. They absolutely helped keep the Argos in the game during the dumpster fire first half, but a few things kept this grade down a little. All the pressure never added up to a sack, and a few timely sacks would have helped, and too often the edge pressure ran too far up field and allowed Collaros to escape from the contain.
LINEBACKERS - B+
Muamba was once again an absolute tone setter with huge hits and keeping the dump off in the middle of the field as a no-fly zone for teams. McManis continues to be a perfect partner for the linebacker dynamic duo and Priester had a huge sack late in the game to set up the potential tying score. The run game was nonexistent, and the screen game was also DOA.
DEFENSIVE BACKS - A
A fantastic bounce back game for this unit. The played like a group that was angry and it showed on the field, they were flying to the ball, making terrific open field tackles, playing tight man coverage, blitzed superbly, Peters ended the half with a great pick, and they just kicked butt all night. They did get burned a little on a double move but that is part of the price for how well they played the screen game, and their ‘plaster’ technique was way better on scrambles. The PI call on Shaq was weak as well. Topflight game from this unit.
SPECIAL TEAMS - C
The return game is still a work in progress. I am concerned about the rate of progress however as the blocking on returns is still poor. The punt return game especially, the gunner is never blocked so there is no chance of returns. A 5-yard return average is no good. Now to elephant in the room, Bede. The Boot kept the team in the game going 3 for 3 with long range kicks but this ain’t the try hard league, this is the pros, and he must make the conversion at the end to finish the comeback. Penalties also were an issue on the returns. A lot to clean up on that front.
COACHING - B
Once again, the staff showed the ability to regroup and get the team to play well, at least the defense did in the first half. I loved the timing of the secondary blitz calls and how the defensive game was called all game. Winnipeg only had 11 first downs, to the Argos 23. Kudos to the defensive staff after last week. The Red Zone is still a nightmare for the offense and although some more success at short yardage was nice to see, the failure to get the first in the redzone was a killer. It sounds like hindsight, but I wished they had gone for two with Harris who I believed would have taken a tank to stop him from scoring.