The 2018 Season: Can It Be Salvaged?
September 19, 2018
Fresh off back to back losses to the ticats over Labour Day, the Argos sit at 3-8 on the season.
With seven games to go, we ask the question:
THE 2018 SEASON: CAN IT BE SALVAGED?
Let’s start with a recap of what took our team to this point.
Under centre, the Argos lost QB Ricky Ray at the home opener to a potential career-ending injury, high profile offseason acquisition QB James Franklin was inconsistent, leading to QB McLeod Bethel-Thompson taking the reins, but hasn’t been able to duplicate his come-from-behind magic of his first two starts.
The offence has been inconsistent, producing the second-fewest points per game average in the league. Last year’s outstanding rookie, James Wider Jr is 4th in the league in rushing, but has the lowest yards per carry of the top 10 at 4.7. SJ Green sits 12th receiving yards with nobody to get him the ball consistently.
The story on the other side of the ball is no better, with the Argos sitting dead last in points allowed per game. Injuries to Bear Woods, Cassius Vaughn, Marcus Ball, and Dylan Wynn have made consistency on defence a real challenge. They are also bottom of the barrel for sacks…Oh, and they traded RE Shawn Lemon mid-season. Apparently QB pressure isn’t a big deal to the Argos this season, eh?
When it comes to kicking, neither Ronnie Pfeffer nor Zackary Medeiros are over 80% in field goal percentage. On special teams, although returner Martese Jackson is among the league leaders in average yards per return…Wait, they traded him??? Sonofa…
That’s where the team has been. Let’s look where they’re going;
Week 15: Home vs. Saskatchewan
The last time the Riders visited BMO was last year’s East Final, which Argos won in a thriller. Saskatchewan was rolling, winners of 4 straight, before dropping a home date to the Redblacks. It’ll be the first time Argos newly-acquired receiver Duron Carter will face his former team, and few like the spotlight more. Watch for him to make an impact in this one, but will it be enough? My heart says this’ll be the start of a winning roll for the Double Blue. My head says Riders get back on track.
Week 16: Road vs. Calgary
Argos are winless on the road this season, and it’s the Stamps. Moving on.
Week 17: Road vs. BC
BC is in the West basement, but has one of the top home records in the league. Injuries to Manny Arceneaux & Solomon Eliminian have hampered the team on both sides of the ball, but two-headed QB headache of Lemon & Odell Willis, along with the inspiring leadership of Travis Lulay mean this will not be a vacation to the left coast. My heart and head agree this is a winnable game.
Week 18: Home vs. hamilton
Okay, you’ll never hear me say, “I hate these guys.” There are players on this roster I’d be happy to have with the Argos, and hate requires too much effort. I will say I really really dislike these guys. They’re also playing really well, and the Argos struggle at the Donut Box, with only one win there. My heart says they’re due, my head says this is not sizing up well.
Week 19 Home vs. Montreal
I’ll admit it: I did not give Montreal enough credit going into their first game against Toronto this season. Their defence was perfect, frustrating the Argos offence at every turn. The Argos can beat this team, and will beat this team in Week 19.
Week 20: Road vs. Montreal
And, we’re back on the road! Ugh…
Okay, okay…They’ve got this. Question marks at QB for the Als helps the Argos grind out a tough road win.
Week 21: Road vs. Ottawa
Finishing on the road in the nation’s capital, the east leading Redblacks host the Argos. Some of the most entertaining games of the last few seasons for the Boatmen have come in Ottawa, with high scoring nail biters that come down to the final play. Regardless of record coming in, it’s tough to guess how it’ll go, so I’ll lean into my homerism & say Argos win.
So my heart has the Argos finishing off the season going 6-1 and my head says 3-4. My heart has the season ending with a 9-9 record, that may be enough to make the playoffs, but my head has them 6-12, on the outside looking in. But what do you think? Comment below with your predictions for the rest of the year & we’ll take a look in November & see who was closest.