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Wednesday, December 13, 2017

10 THINGS I THINK I THINK FOR PEDERSEN RECOVERY

1 - JONESING: 18 days after the Grey Cup, the Roughriders made big news by signing Head Coach & GM Chris Jones to a contract extension through 2019. There were lots of news tidbits in Tuesday's news conference with Jones and Craig Reynolds but one of the most interesting is that these extension talks go back to October 20 when the pair met for breakfast in the Buffalo Cafe in downtown Calgary.

They were in agreement that an extension was in order, and that they'd pick up talks after the season. What would've happened had the Riders won the Grey Cup in between? It would've been win/win for everybody.

2 - REYNOLDS WRAP: Lost in the commotion this week is that Craig Reynolds' own contract is up for renewal. He was asked about it at Tuesday's news conference but the Foam Lake, SK product just smiled, winked, and said, "I think that'll work out fine". Perhaps the deal has already been signed! To look back at his tenure, over the past three seasons Reynolds has brought this franchise back from the dead, overseen the move into the CFL's finest stadium and locked up the top football man in the league (Jones) for at least two more seasons. Here's hoping Reynolds got a raise!

3 - THE GOAL: In a one-on-one interview I was fortunate enough to do with Jones after the news conference, the Rider boss said their goal from here on in is clear: to finish first and clinch homefield in the West Final annually. The common characteristic between this year's Grey Cup combatants was that both the Argonauts and Stampeders clinched their divisions and only had to win one game - at home - to advance to the championship. That's the goal.

4 - TENNESSEE CHRISTMAS: Does Jones ever get a break? Yes. He was headed home this week to hang his Christmas lights before holding free agent camps this weekend in Orlando and Miami. Then he'll return to Tennessee for Christmas and take a break until January 1. Then football business picks up all over again.

5 - QB'S: It's still impossible to predict who the Roughriders' starting QB will be in 2018 and Jones was careful on Tuesday not to mention the names of any potential free agents due to the CFL's tampering rule. "We'll have a good group of QBs no matter who it is," Jones said, alluding to their current five pivots plus players on other teams. If Jones isn't worried about that position, I see no reason for anyone else to be worried.

6 - WILD SUPPORT: With Commissioner Randy Ambrosie saying it - plus Rider President Craig Reynolds - get ready for the CFL season to be moved up a month by 2019. Reynolds said on Tuesday the Riders "wildly support" the Commissioner's effort to have the Grey Cup played in late October. Just don't expect it to happen in time for next season because so much is already scheduled for next season including the Draft, Florida minicamps, etc. But the biggest opponent to moving the season up will be TSN (aka the CFL's daddy).

7 - SO LONG SCOTTIE: After two years with the Roughriders, Scott Annand is heading back to his home in the Maritimes. The long time Canadian football man served as the Riders' Football Operations Coordinator for the first two years of the Chris Jones regime but now the Truro, NS product is moving on. If Scottie made a mistake the past two years, I never saw it. He's a top-notch individual and we wish him well!

8 - WHAT A STEEL: We'll start to have a better idea how the Pats' Sam Steel and Josh Mahura are faring at World Junior camp over the next two days. That's when Canada will play a team of U-Sport allstars in southern Ontario for their first exhibition games. I'm hoping for the pair to make the team but Steel hasn't had a great year. Granted, I haven't seen the Pats play in a month but in the games I saw, Sam was missing nets and fanning on shots regularly. He's still working hard and in the right place, but it wasn't happening for him. Is the "C" too heavy for him? Hopefully he'll shrug that off at Canada's camp.

9 - SEE FOR YOURSELF: The Regina Pats are 20 points behind the 1st place Moose Jaw Warriors and find themselves as the talk of the town these days. If things don't change (record-wise), historians say the Pats will be the 4th-worst team to serve as Memorial Cup host since the inception of the tournament format. What's their problem? Check them out yourself and get back to me. The Pats host Kamloops on Wednesday, Saskatoon on Friday, Lethbridge on Saturday, and visit the Blades on Sunday. I'll be calling Friday's and Sunday's games on Access TV. Let's get to the bottom of this!

10 - FEEL THE RUSH: The NLL season is upon us! The Saskatchewan Rush and the SportsCage have entered into a partnership so be listening for some very exciting promotions between the two this winter. The Rush open the season on Saturday at the Toronto Rock and then host their home-opener on Dec. 23 against the New England Black Wolves. Let's see if the Rush can make it four straight Champion's Cup appearances!

Y'er welcome,
RP
@rodpedersen

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

The Pats on pace to be the 4th worst team in Memorial Cup host team in history. That's inexcusable. Wow.
Fans should not be overly upset if neither Steel nor Mahura don't make the team. This idea that some of the medial types locally are calling him a lock. If he does show enough to make it , that will be the 13th or 14th forward. With his poor numbers it's going to hard to unseat someone who has played well all season. The entire defence is back so it will be tough for Mahura to crack the lineup. Early in the season Steel needed a good left winger as did Bradley. The Pats made no needed moves to get them two wingers. They then had to disrupt their lineup and take number two centre Bradley to play with Steel. That was only after both of their numbers and play dropped off. Management felt they could wait on Jost and Wagner both left wingers but they outsmarted themselves. Steel and Bradley struggled, numbers dropped, and the team struggles to get to .500 and hold onto it. Now they find out at this late date that they aren't getting either. This should have been dealt with early not worrying about who would return here. Goaltending has been sub par all season and management refuses to deal with that issue. The fans have had nothing to get excited over and there is no buzz surrounding this team except for negative stuff and it's coming from outside and not just the Pats followers. Management should have got the team going earlier by making the required moves. The good teams all all made moves but the Pats spent three months wishing and hoping. Now their poised to be the 4th worst team to host the Memorial Cup? One has to wonder if there are issues higher up. Because the team is going lower down. Worst record in the last three years. Just the facts.

Lewis Grant said...

The Regina Pats are 20 points behind the 1st place Moose Jaw Warriors and find themselves as the talk of the town these days. If things don't change (record-wise), historians say the Pats will be the 4th-worst team to serve as Memorial Cup host since the inception of the tournament format.

If the Pats don't turn things around, they'd be an embarrassment to the tournament. They'd have to relinquish their spot to Moose Jaw (this kind of thing has often happened before), or maybe even to Swift Current if Moose Jaw wins the Dub.

Anonymous said...

Waiting on "rabbits from a hat" isn't proving to be too fruitful

Anonymous said...

"The top football man in the league". In your opinion. I think Trestman proved this year that he is the top football man in the league. With nobody even in a close second, certainly not Jones.
As to Jones talking about QBs, what did you expect him to say? Did you really expect him to tell you that he is very worried about not getting Franklin, about Bridge not being signed, that the only experienced QB that they have for sure right now is Kevin Glenn? If he seriously wants to make a run at the Grey Cup next year, then he better be worried because Glenn won't get him there.

Anonymous said...

The tournament isn't going anywhere so put that nonsense to bed. I'm pretty sure Robison is having ongoing dialogue with the ownership group. Their pockets are deep enough that there will be no problem putting big money into everybody's coffers. The on ice product is a different thing and to some, an unimportant thing. I have read where some fans don't care if they win anything. Some are worried about five years down the road and a host of other nonsensical comments.

This poor team is purely substandard play and under-performace by some players like Steel etc. Then there have been some injuries but mostly it's been poor construction of the team. They said they knew they wouldn't be as good as last year. What kind of comment is that. They weren't good enough last year. If they knew there were problems with talent right out the gate, why didn't they do something about much earlier, in fact over the summer. You can't hope on NHL teams. Last year they caught lightning in a bottle when they got Brooks back. That doesn't happen often. I guess they were trying for that again this year. They are simply short of "talent".

I believe management was poorly prepared and slow to react. Now they have to attempt to find some talent so that this team and tournament can salvage some respectability.

Anonymous said...

I was excited. You said he locked up the top football guy in the league. I thought we signed Tressman or Huffer. Instead we signed the slow learner and three assistant gms and 17 assistant coaches and 27 part time scouts. Nothing like pissing away money on a leadership group who is 15 and 21 in the regular season

Anonymous said...

Scotty did a great job. Forewarning 2 years in that job is the equivalent to about 15 in a regular gig. It's 24/7 all consuming.

Anonymous said...

There was another common characteristic between the grey cup combatants - solid quarterbacking.

Why should we be worried? After Jones and Murphy cut Durant with no transition plan and nobody waiting in the wings to take over, they said "It's January", implying they had plenty of time to fill the gap.

From there we scouted Vince Young,and ended up recycling Kevin Glenn, who performed as expected - adequate regular season, with a playoff debacle.

Because of that, we dont know enough about Bridge and saw nothing from Williams who showed well in the pre season.

So yeah,we've made no progress and have no plan at the qb position. That's been worrisome for over a year now.

Whatever happens,please NO MORE GLENN.

Anonymous said...

Top football man in the league??? By all accounts Hufnagel trumps Jones. You could argue Popp, who put a GC winner together in ONE YEAR after an identical 5 win Argo season to the Riders the year before, trumps Jones as well. You might even say Ed Hervey who was the architect of the 2015 Eskimos, 2/3 of them there when Jones took over, & essentially fielded a team that won 12 games this year despite 54 different starters, also trumps Jones. Top football man in the league - the usual Rider bias which dismisses the contributions of anyone outside the confines of Castle Green. Look at it anyway you want - the Riders may have improved by 5 wins but still finished 4th by 2 wins behind 3rd. In an 18 game schedule, 2 wins is significant. In the West it will be interesting to see how Jones does next year. Despite what the Watermelon brigade thinks, finishing higher than 4th is no sure thing. The 3 above them CLEARLY have better QB'ing, younger OL's, better established RB's, not to mention far better DL's. Outside of Willy J., the DL is average at best & the stats point this out. Had Jefferson not been there, our sack, pressures & other defensive stats would have been downright embarrassing. Yes, the Riders will pick up some new pieces in free agency & improve the club but assuming the other clubs are going to stand still is naive.

Russell Cone said...

As a long time fan of the Saskatoon Blades, the only way the Pats could be worse than the Blades during their memorial cup year is if the pats don't make the playoffs. The Blades made the playoffs and were swept in the first round. They had 51 days off (I believe) before the Memorial cup started. John Paddock is a terrific coach and he'll turn that team around.

I guess now I know what your meeting was about with the Rush in October. Congrats Roddy, I'm sure you're thrilled to be part of that team.


Russ from Saskatoon

Anonymous said...

THIS IS FAKE NEWS...

Check your facts bud.

It happened once in 1990 when the Dukes of Hamilton were forced to withdraw due to only winning 11 games.

I love how people can just spew stuff like it's a fact without doing any sort of research.

The Truth.

Anonymous said...

I heard on CKOM Saskatoon today that Steel was NOT dressing tonight for team Canada. They were not sure if it was because he had already made the line up or if he wasn't going to make it .

Anonymous said...

OK, sask finished 4th in west. However before you say they were not good,
2 more points than Toronto
3 more than Ottawa
6 more than BC
8 more than Hamilton
14 more than Montreal.
That's a GOOD improvement
Take all your negative crap and shove it. It's still 6 months from the start of training camp and the sky is not falling, chicken little

Anonymous said...

Boy it’s amazing how the Jones haters show up everywhere. Seems like it’s all they think about. Heck, Shepard and Lynch are probably calling every board member’s phone right now asking them to turf Reynolds so they can get one of their own in the top job. First order of biz? Dump Jones and bring back Taman!

Anonymous said...

There's been a million and one stupid things said on this blog. But you now hold that title strictly to yourself

Anonymous said...

Yes, 2 more than 5th place Argos, 3 more than 6th place Ottawa etc. In othet words, STILL 4 points less than 3rd place Eskimos. THAT's my point. What is your point? Never said they weren't a good team. At 10-8 & a 4-6 record in the West, a ways to go. A bit rich to anoint Jones as the top football man in the league. Jones got paid the big bucks to bring a Cup & in 2 years built a 4th place club. Popp took a 5 win club after joining the Argos when most of the big name free agents were gone & won the Cup. Give credit whete credit is due rather than constantly boasting about all things Riders. Rider fans have no perspective. They worship their players until they leave & then dump on them. You put your players on a pedestal but undervalue other teams' accomplishments. "We have the best fans, we have the best stadium, we have the most money, we have the top football mind in the league blah, blah, blah". What you do have is small town syndrome. It's tiresome this constant need for attention. You'te like the baby in the family. Just waiting for the Grey Cup talk to start again. B-O-R-I-N-G.

Anonymous said...

Oh oh. There's that jealousy again.

It looks good on ya bub

Anonymous said...

Lynch wouldn't do that. He picked the Riders to be in first place in 2016. He is totally enthralled with Jones.

Anonymous said...

A constant need for attention along with a feeling of entitlement. Franklin was supposed to come to the Riders. The Riders were supposed to be in the Grey Cup. Every player in the league wants to play here. If they don't want to play here, then obviously that player must be a moron. And if the Riders do not come out on top, I tell you it is a bloody conspiracy!

Anonymous said...

Moderate success.

Anonymous said...

Ha ha, Rod. "Top football man in the league"? If that were the case he would have gotten more than one year. One year was mandatory or he is a lame duck GM which is not the message Reynolds wants to send. On the other hand no clarity at QB makes a long term extension questionable.

DJR

Anonymous said...

Exactly Anon, these over valuations are quite tiresome. The rest of the league doesn't give a crap about the hot air being blown from Suckskatchewan. The league needs Toronto more than Regina, why? Because advertisers and tv people care about the largest market in the country and not the most backwards. King delusional (Rod) needs to take his green blinders off and look at things objectively. He is the laughing stock of the CFL as are the Riders. Ever wonder why EVERY other fan base hates the Rider fans? Because you bring it on yourselves with your arrogant attitudes. Doubt Roddy will let this get through as he loves to censor any anti Rider comments but I guess the truth hurts. YOU ARE NOT GODS GIFT TO THE CFL, YOU ARE THE CURSE THE OTHER 8 TEAMS HAVE TO PIT UP WITH

CM said...

need a qb to win. and better cdn drafting to continue to win. St John and Judge have been duds. Still relying on Labatte, Bagg and now Muamba. Otherwise yes good athletes here. They should spend less time on all these camps and more time in the draft room improving their CDN picks.

Anonymous said...

Wow go to your teams blog. Your badmouthing the guy who writes the blog why are you here just to be ignorant. Your lucky Rod posts your crap on here then you bash him and say he won't post it even though I have seen a lot of Posts on here that say the same thing yet still gets posted, what are you writing that isn't getting posted, must be rude crap that has no place here. Go read and post on a blog that you like the blogger. How do you have time to post on things you don't like. I barely have time to post on here and I'm a rider fan.

Anonymous said...

If they had contacts they wouldn't need those camps, they'd just sign the guys with CFL qualities. This admin has looked at 4,000 bodies and found Christion Jones, that's it, everyone else played professional someplace else previously.

Anonymous said...

It's laughable that some idiots on here actually think the Pats will forfeit their Memorial Cup spot as hosts. The Pats aren't giving up their Memorial Cup spot to anyone. It's their 100th season and coincides with the 100th Memorial Cup. Paddock will right the ship