Chris Jones deserves to win CFL coach of the year but don’t think for a second his re-build in Regina is complete.
Roughriders Still Lacking at Quarterback
The Riders are stacked at just about every American position on their roster but are still short at the most important spot: quarterback.
Saskatchewan’s shaky offensive line struggled mightily to protect starter Kevin Glenn as evidenced in the nine times he was relieved by backup Brandon Bridge. It taught us all a few things aside from a disappointing year from an offensive line which was supposed to be bolstered by the free agent pickup of last year’s lineman of the year award winner Derek Dennis (what a disappointment he was).
Kevin Glenn is still who we thought he was: very good in low-pressure situations but not good enough to overcome spotty protection. He also doesn’t have the live arm strong enough to will a team to win in windy, playoff conditions. But it also taught us something else.
Team not confident in Brandon Bridge Either
Riders head coach/general manager/Mr. Everything Chris Jones clearly has no faith in Brandon Bridge to be the long-term solution for this team at quarterback. The repetitive support of Kevin Glenn, despite lacklustre performances since coming back from a banjo bowl injury late in the season, proved the coach has little to no appreciation for what Bridge accomplished in late season victories at Hamilton and more importantly in Toronto and Calgary.
Bridge is a dream physically with size, speed and a rocket for an arm. And he’s Canadian too. That might actually matter this offseason when commissioner Randy Ambrosie meets with the board of governors to suggest counting the quarterback position as any other to use a Canadian as one of the 7 starting non-imports. This would allow the Roughriders to dress an extra American elsewhere.
Chris Jones needs to invest some time into this athlete who has a massive upside. Bringing back Kevin Glenn will do little to build the confidence of or relationship with his younger pupil.
Regardless of Bridge, Kevin Glenn Not the Solution
If in fact Brandon Bridge isn’t the answer–and all indications point toward Chris Jones feeling that he’s not–than all the more reason to learn that in 2018. Bringing back Kevin Glenn only takes playing time away from Bridge and further delays the transition to him or Marquise Williams or some other quarterback who could be brought in to restore this franchise to it’s glory days of 2007 and 2013.
The fact the Riders put Williams on their six-game injured list late in the season to keep him away from prying eyes of other organizations–and the Stampeders can’t complain about Jones breaking the rules here since they did the same with a young Dave Dickenson 21 seasons ago–is a sign they would like to see what he(Williams) has got. Kevin Glenn returning for another season will only get in the way of that.
2017 was an uplifting season for Saskatchewan. Doubling their win total from a year ago and their best season since that glamorous championship of 2013 has given the melon heads lots to get excited about going forward. But holes remain along the offensive line and at quarterback.
There are plenty of solutions available. None of them include Kevin Glenn.
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