Three things that probably aren’t worth thinking about with the next game 13 days from now but are required to discuss after the Lions’ win Monday by order of the commissioner, well, my boss.
First down: While all the of the rush to praise Andrew Harris has for the most part been warranted, we’re about to see what the Winnipeg tailback really has in his game. Opponents have shut Harris down for two games now, and there was the occasional sign of frustration visible during the latter stages of the win over the Argos.
Harris has met every test thus far but the true test of a great player is dealing with being taken out of games. Time also for a bit of a rethink by the offensive coaching staff to see are other ways to get him the ball.
Second down: Geroy Simon is by no means over the hill, so could there at least be the occasional attempt to get him the ball. Simon had only two catches for the second straight game, which would be understandable if he was being blanketed in coverage. Toronto showed him different defenders but there was nothing outrageously exotic. Travis Lulay never once looked at him other than a quick slant and another catch where he got himself open while the quarterback was scrambling.
There’s lot to love about the Lions; the fact they survived a game without Anton McKenzie, Rich Stubler’s defence, the play of Ernest Jackson and definitely the unsung hero, Jabar Westerman. Surely there’s more they can do with Simon and Arland Bruce.
Third down: We’re sure the 100th Grey Cup will be a roaring success but based on Monday’s game the talk about a football renaissance in Toronto is just so much hot air. We blogged about the absence of a football presence in the downtown core during the long weekend and the atmosphere at the game itself simply left a lot to be desired again.
It isn’t just the Argos either. A check of the Bills in Toronto store outside Rogers Centre revealed not one NFL item was up for sale, mostly Blue Jays stuff and one rung of Ricky Ray uniforms. The Lions may wonder what has happened, or not happened, about their attendance coming off a Grey Cup year. No need to wonder why things aren’t working in Toronto.