“It is just another game,” “We go out there every week and focus on the task at hand,” “We do not look at it that way,” are all ways I could imagine Bomber’s Head Coach Mike O’Shea responding to questions leading up to the Banjo Bowl…but I do not buy it!
I believe that the Bombers have an excellent coach and that everyone has bought into his philosophy. I know he is an excellent communicator with his team; you know a leader communicates well when the rest of the team provides the same message. That is a fact with this Bombers team! Ask them about any week’s upcoming game and each one will tell you, “We are just trying to go 1-0 this week.”
Yet, when the Bombers come out and absolutely spank the Riders 51-6; when they lost the week before in the Labour Day Classic in Regina, and in overtime…I do not buy that they Bombers completely forget on what happened the week before. Remember, not only did the Bombers get beat in overtime a week earlier but Collaros took a nasty shot from Robertson. (Yes, Robertson apparently apologized to Collaros; and was suspended 1 game; and was apparently disciplined by his team – and ironically enough as the TSN commentators were mentioning that Collaros threw for another touch down – but I do not buy that the Bombers do not use that for fuel!)
After the LDC Zach had this to say, ““Do you think the league will do anything about it?” Collaros said, visibly emotional after the 32-30 loss to the Roughriders before 33,350 fans at sold-out Mosaic Stadium. “It happens all the time.” – source
I believe so much that the Bombers use that type of thing for motivation that I called the game preview article a retribution game.
Looking at all the statistics it certainly did seem like a retribution game to me!
When you beat a team that bad there are many in contention for a Game Ball.
Since 2007 when the CFL began charting offensive drives, no team (other than the Bombers now) had scored 6 touchdowns on their first 6 drives. Not only that, but Winnipeg tied their own record fop the most amount of points scored in a first half. Additionally, the Bombers did not punt this game until the last minute of the 4th quarter! Pretty much the whole offence could get a Game Ball!
If we wanted to get specific, we could look at Dalton Schoen who scored 3 touchdowns on 3 straight possessions! Or maybe you would like Kenny Lawler who had a catch and run – that after video review – was ruled a touchdown! However, Lawler did not need video review…he knew it was a touchdown the whole time! He simply would not be denied; as he was about to get tackled at the 5 yard line, he spun to his left and drove hard to the goal line.
Maybe you like Oliveira. Last year he only hit 1,000 yards rushing on his final carry of the season. Well, he is over 1,000 yards already and has only played 11 games this year! But we also have to look at Collaros. After an atrocious game last week he went 18 for 21 this game and threw for 5 touchdowns! I would mention his passer rating but we will be honest…most people have no clue what it means; including myself.
The Game Ball conversation simply cannot be complete without highlighting the Bombers’ defense. They did not allow a single point in the second half and only 6 points all game! That, after they lost in overtime a week before allowing Dolegala to complete the 2 point conversion in the LDC in overtime.
While any selection would qualify for a Game Ball, I am going to give it to the Bombers’ defense! They did not have an interception, and I do not think they even played a really flashy game. Now that is surprising to say seeing that they only allowed 6 points. Yet, what I saw was a Bombers defense that were consistently in the correct positions playing sound football. Jefferson and the crew were giving Dolegala fits, but we have come to expect that. Players were knocking down balls and defending downfield well; maybe not flashy…but effective!
Watch all the highlights here and tell me who you would give the Game Ball to!
When the Bombers win, unless somebody did something really boneheaded the other team receives the Jock. Yet, I did not see anything incredible stupid from Saskatchewan to merit receiving the Jock. And while sparing Saskatchewan is not something Bomber fans have come to appreciate; it seems like it would be pilling on to hand them a Jock after they got some thing else handed to them.
So in the first time ever…no Jock will be handed out.
What did I get right? What did I get wrong? Let me know in the comments section wherever you are reading this.
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