RedBlacks 31 - Lions 24, Post-game Stats and Comments

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Toppy Vann
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Mon Aug 28, 2017 10:42 am

Things that relate to Wally's philosophy that winning is all about player execution.

1. It's interesting with the BC Lions, that the only time coaching and schemes come to the fore is when they're in a losing streak. That's on Wally and his resistance to letting go of player execution as the key to everything when it comes to winning. With the technology (pads at the bench today) it's old school and wrong to think that it doesn't matter if they know your schemes and plays as we'll out execute you anyway. It works with BC until they run into teams with hot hands and who are very well prepared to know the Lion tendencies.

2. Wally never seems to appoint assistants (exceptions incl. Dave Ritchie and others who go on to other places) who are in game top managers and leaders who can rally their teams at the half (or mid quarter) by making changes that work. I'll never forget Dorazio saying it's hard to teach linemen run blocking but Calgary has newbies in and out and in different positions and they keep winning that way.

3. It's always the players and the media and astute fans who are first screaming for things to be fixed scheme wise. Actually Lulay staying as starter until he ran out of magic (IN RETROSPECT) would have very likely achieved better results.

4. Bringing in players like a Chris Williams but not using them like they were used in the places where they were lighting it up or creating specific packages and moving them around the field to give the D the same player in a different spot. Why Williams and Rainey? Why JJohnson - and not have a lot of packages to use him? Why aren't FBs used like other teams - blockers, pass catchers?

5. Players just play and execute viewpoint versus develop leadership in the team that his assistant coaches turn to at the half and actually share insights into what is and isn't working and how to fix it. Lulay IS Wally's exception from what we see and hear.

___
Having said this Wally is still the HC with the most Ws ever and longevity unmatched in the entire CFL or pro football so his player execution belief is not invalid. It just needs to be supported by coaches who can make changes needed in in game situations.

He needs to develop players as leaders (not the old players council) but football focused on what's working and not and how they can fix it. But that's not likely his style and to get there he'd need more mature assistants who wouldn't be threatened by players like Lulay who know the game.

TheLionKing
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Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:55 am

Maybe Buono need to bring back the Player's Council.

DanoT
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Mon Aug 28, 2017 5:01 pm

It is not just poor tackling, missed blocks, route runners crashing into each other; it is other teams being better prepared and very good at anticipating what the Lions are doing or about to do. The Lions also seem to be an easy target for trick plays, quick substitutions and they just get out smarted by other teams.

I am thinking that this will not be a playoff year for the Lions so I am looking forward to and hoping for new ownership, new GM, HC, assistant coaches.

Next season Jennings is set to make $360k; Lulay will be a free agent.

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Sir Purrcival
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Mon Aug 28, 2017 7:11 pm

As much as I hate to say it, your analysis tracks with the missing the playoffs. Changing the regime on that scale though is likely to mean a few seasons of futility even if the right people are chosen. My concern is that Wally with all his years of service will have a lot to do with whatever the regime change is and I am very much afraid of the filters he uses to select people. Whether he is completely retired or otherwise, no doubt his council will be sought when it comes to some of this stuff. What I think would be best is to relieve him of the GM Position at the conclusion of the season and have someone else take charge of the transition. At this stage, I wonder if Scott Milanovich could be lured out the NFL for a GM position. His is the only name I can think of but I'm sure others here have some ideas of those who might be suitable or possible. What we need clearly is someone who is "up to date" in this game. A renovation as it were. That philosophy has to start in upper management. A new owner would be even better at this stage as I'm sure Braley would be more likely to stick with what is known but if nickels were wishes......
This isn't meant as criticism of the people in question. This city and this team owe a great debt to the likes of Braley and Buono but everything has a time to it and in this case, it is clearly past. It has been a great run.

Now watch, the Lions go on a tear, win all their remaining games and make a cup run. I don't really believe it but hope is hard to extinguish.
Tell me how long must a fan be strong? Ans. Always.

DanoT
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Mon Aug 28, 2017 8:35 pm

Chances are with most new GM and HC, probably a rookie at the positions, will mean some futility and the bottom or near bottom of the standings. However the new regime will get a decent roster.

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CardiacKid
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Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:00 pm

In regards to the Lions making the playoffs, a few "the glass is half-full" thoughts that are percolating in my noggin:
-the offence has shown itself to be an entirely different kettle of fish with Travis at the controls. Give him an entire game and not a half of football with a massive hole to dig out of; that improves the prognosis massively.

-a Travis-managed offence will manage the clock better and be less prone to 2-and-out series; giving the defence more time to rest and not get fatigued as games progress.

-the bye-week is upon us and important cogs like Husband and Steward can hopefully get fully healed and facilitate the best configuration of the Oline available. Perhaps even Brett Boyko will arrive to provide some needed back-up and depth.

-I think the Eskimos will struggle mighty the rest of the year due in large part to their ridiculous number of injuries but I think their unbeaten string at the start of the year was misleading as to how good they are. It was like putting lipstick on a pig. I feel they are ripe for cascading down the standings.

-are the Roughriders for real? They beat a listless Lion team and a decimated Edmonton squad, those wins could be the indication of a bright future for the Jones regime or simply good timing. And what if Kevin Glen, the Ferdinand Magellan of the CFL, goes down to injury? I think the Rider resurgence comes to a screeching halt.

Maybe a laundry list of what ifs but to trot out a well worn cliche, there is still a lot of football to be played.

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Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:51 pm

CardiacKid wrote:
Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:00 pm
In regards to the Lions making the playoffs, a few "the glass is half-full" thoughts that are percolating in my noggin:
-the offence has shown itself to be an entirely different kettle of fish with Travis at the controls. Give him an entire game and not a half of football with a massive hole to dig out of; that improves the prognosis massively.

-a Travis-managed offence will manage the clock better and be less prone to 2-and-out series; giving the defence more time to rest and not get fatigued as games progress.

-the bye-week is upon us and important cogs like Husband and Steward can hopefully get fully healed and facilitate the best configuration of the Oline available. Perhaps even Brett Boyko will arrive to provide some needed back-up and depth.

-I think the Eskimos will struggle mighty the rest of the year due in large part to their ridiculous number of injuries but I think their unbeaten string at the start of the year was misleading as to how good they are. It was like putting lipstick on a pig. I feel they are ripe for cascading down the standings.

-are the Roughriders for real? They beat a listless Lion team and a decimated Edmonton squad, those wins could be the indication of a bright future for the Jones regime or simply good timing. And what if Kevin Glen, the Ferdinand Magellan of the CFL, goes down to injury? I think the Rider resurgence comes to a screeching halt.

Maybe a laundry list of what ifs but to trot out a well worn cliche, there is still a lot of football to be played.
I'm also a glass-half-full guy. I picked the Lions to play in the Grey Cup against the Alouettes so the next home game could be a Grey Cup preview. :wink:

A QB change and a few tweaks to the offence and defence can go a long way toward restoring the roar. Lulay has been outstanding with his rejuvenated arm. One stat of note regarding Lulay's arm: Of CFL quarterbacks who have attempted at least 30 passes of over 20 yards, Lulay leads the league with a completion percentage of 56.7%. Darian Durant is the only other QB who has completed at least 50% of his attempts at that distance. Jennings is at 33% on long passes, and those throws were considered his bread and butter last year.

Another midseason stat of note is QB pressures. Like turnovers, quarterback pressures are becoming an important indicator of wins and losses. Five times this year the B.C. offence has given up at least 9 QB pressures and 10 combined sacks and pressures. Their record in those games is 0-5. They're 5-0 when they give up fewer than 9 pressures and 10 combined sacks and pressures.

Overall, the B.C. offence ranks last in QB pressures allowed and the defence ranks last in QB pressures made. Generating a better pass rush may be the toughest task facing the Lions at midseason. Craig Roh is the only defensive lineman who has mounted any kind of pass rush and his 11 QB pressures in 10 games are just 3 more than the 8 pressures DeQuin Evans recorded in the first three games of the season before his back started acting up. If Evans recovers and is activated on schedule for the final 6 games of the regular season, he could help provide the missing ingredient. More likely, it will take other changes to bring energy to the defence. Perhaps former NFLer Frank Alexander will reappear in town with a healthy foot and become the impact CFL player that many people had expected in training camp. Or an NFL cut will become available. Even Adam Bighill would be a big addition to the defence if he doesn't stick with the Saints.
"I think [Fred Fateri] was like a lot of people who watch football, hockey or any professional sport on television. They sit there and think they could coach better than the professional. Some people really think that." - Bob Ackles, The Water Boy

DanoT
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Tue Aug 29, 2017 8:56 am

Half empty guy here. The D didn't force a two and out until the fourth quarter...it doesn't get much worse than that.

Lulay's play and leadership can't fix the D, he can't return kicks or improve special teams etc. In other words there is a lot more problems than QB play.

NFL cuts may improve the player roster but there is no mid season equivalent to improve the coaching staff.

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Toppy Vann
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Tue Aug 29, 2017 12:52 pm

Rambling thoughts:

1. Not sure who said it, but I soured on Scott Milanovich last year when he dumped 4 receivers at a time. Also when he chose Drew Willy as the future of the Argos when most fans could see that Willy in WPG was awful and not likely as a QB to draw flies to games. Drew Willy was like me on Level 39/40 of an online Mahjong game where - despite no matter how many times I try or get close - I can't do it as I play too freaking slow!!! That was the Drewmeister - too slow.

2. Given that there is clear cut HC choice in the Lions today, why not carry on as is and hopefully the Lions will see fit to pass the reigns to Lulay who I think could make the transition to HC as he's even further ahead in his thinking than Dave Dickensen was when he was still playing. Dave D is similar in some ways to Travis L but different in that Travis is able to set his ego aside. Dave couldn't easily as a player (and I know I never could either as it's how some are built). Lulay's leadership maturity is off the scale for any active pro player I've seen. The issue for a new HC is can they assemble a staff. I think Lulay could as he'd attract others and he has the leadership maturity to not be such a huge ego he gets in the way of his coaches and players.

Lulay as noted by the always astute Lowell Ulrich and even the Lions is a de facto coach already. I suspect he could assemble a staff unlike when Mike Benevides took over.

3. Khari Jones was interviewed by local sports TV last night (Global IIRC) and while some might think he was at the "office" self scouting - he wasn't. He and Marco I were both interviewed at a golf course lol. Marco in his talk said that by the end of 6 regular season games the small individual mess ups on offence are gone BUT this year they are not. That was evident with Moore and Burnham gone and not better with Burnham back. And of course not getting the ball to the play makers and waiting too long to change QBs.

maxlion
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Tue Aug 29, 2017 1:49 pm

B.C.FAN wrote:
Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:51 pm

Another midseason stat of note is QB pressures. Like turnovers, quarterback pressures are becoming an important indicator of wins and losses. Five times this year the B.C. offence has given up at least 9 QB pressures and 10 combined sacks and pressures. Their record in those games is 0-5. They're 5-0 when they give up fewer than 9 pressures and 10 combined sacks and pressures.
I am curious how the league calculates qb pressures. It seems to me that if a qb were to get the ball out of his hands quickly, this would nullify the opportunity for a pressure. Thus, a pressure is a combination of play calling, qb decision making, and o line play.

In my opinion, just based on my own observations, the stats you cite are more indicative of our play calling and qb indecisiveness than o line play. Jones seems to favour long, high risk plays over dinking and dunking down the field, and it has been obvious to me that Jennings has been indecisive and hesitant all year long.

The change in the starting qb, together with more emphasis on quick hitters, would be the most effective strategy to decrease the number of pressures.

This would be reflected in the correlation in wins with pressures. We win because Lulay is making faster and better decisions, and lose when Jennings is looking for the big play.

B.C.FAN
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Tue Aug 29, 2017 9:32 pm

maxlion wrote:
Tue Aug 29, 2017 1:49 pm
B.C.FAN wrote:
Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:51 pm

Another midseason stat of note is QB pressures. Like turnovers, quarterback pressures are becoming an important indicator of wins and losses. Five times this year the B.C. offence has given up at least 9 QB pressures and 10 combined sacks and pressures. Their record in those games is 0-5. They're 5-0 when they give up fewer than 9 pressures and 10 combined sacks and pressures.
I am curious how the league calculates qb pressures. It seems to me that if a qb were to get the ball out of his hands quickly, this would nullify the opportunity for a pressure. Thus, a pressure is a combination of play calling, qb decision making, and o line play.

In my opinion, just based on my own observations, the stats you cite are more indicative of our play calling and qb indecisiveness than o line play. Jones seems to favour long, high risk plays over dinking and dunking down the field, and it has been obvious to me that Jennings has been indecisive and hesitant all year long.

The change in the starting qb, together with more emphasis on quick hitters, would be the most effective strategy to decrease the number of pressures.

This would be reflected in the correlation in wins with pressures. We win because Lulay is making faster and better decisions, and lose when Jennings is looking for the big play.
QB pressures are subjective stats. I believe the league uses a statistician to record plays as they happen and another statistician to review the game video to verify or amend the stats, but I don't know how they define QB pressures.

I agree with your point that Lulay makes quicker decisions and thus less likely to be pressured or sacked. I saw some stats earlier this year which showed that Lulay got rid of the ball faster than Jennings on average, but those were not official league stats so I can't vouch for their accuracy. There is evidence to support your point in the league stats:

- In four starts, Lulay was sacked an average of 2.0 times and was pressured an average of 7.0 times, or 21.6% of dropbacks.
- In six starts, Jennings was sacked an average of 2.8 times and pressured an average of 9.0 times, or 26.3% of dropbacks.

Some unofficial stats from Derek Taylor of TSN, through Week 9:
- Lulay QB rating when not under pressure was 113.8; when under pressure was 86.7 (second to Kevin Glenn).
- Jennings QB rating when not under pressure was 89.0; when under pressure was 29.7 (league worst by far).
"I think [Fred Fateri] was like a lot of people who watch football, hockey or any professional sport on television. They sit there and think they could coach better than the professional. Some people really think that." - Bob Ackles, The Water Boy

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mountaincat
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Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:16 am

Sir Purrcival wrote:
Mon Aug 28, 2017 7:11 pm
What I think would be best is to relieve him of the GM Position at the conclusion of the season and have someone else take charge of the transition.
wally stays on as coach under a new gm? are you serious?

DanoT
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Wed Aug 30, 2017 6:59 am

mountaincat wrote:
Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:16 am
Sir Purrcival wrote:
Mon Aug 28, 2017 7:11 pm
What I think would be best is to relieve him of the GM Position at the conclusion of the season and have someone else take charge of the transition.
wally stays on as coach under a new gm? are you serious?
My prediction is that at the end of the season, as part of his retirement Wally gets to choose his GM predecessor, either Simon or MacVoy (sp) who then hires his own HC. OTOH Wally being Wally he might try to influence the hiring of the HC by appointing a GM and HC "team" with Jones or Washington being that HC. Personally, I feel strongly that neither one has shown enough ability as a coordinator to qualify as a HC.

maxlion
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Wed Aug 30, 2017 8:22 am

DanoT wrote:
Wed Aug 30, 2017 6:59 am
mountaincat wrote:
Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:16 am
Sir Purrcival wrote:
Mon Aug 28, 2017 7:11 pm
What I think would be best is to relieve him of the GM Position at the conclusion of the season and have someone else take charge of the transition.
wally stays on as coach under a new gm? are you serious?
My prediction is that at the end of the season, as part of his retirement Wally gets to choose his GM predecessor, either Simon or MacVoy (sp) who then hires his own HC. OTOH Wally being Wally he might try to influence the hiring of the HC by appointing a GM and HC "team" with Jones or Washington being that HC. Personally, I feel strongly that neither one has shown enough ability as a coordinator to qualify as a HC.
This would be surprising and unusual. Why would Wally want to choose his successor as part of a retirement package? Where is the benefit to him? More likely, Braley might ask for his input. But if Braley is gone too, all bets are off. I don't buy this Wally as megalomaniac idea. Set in his ways, sure, but I suspect he will be very satisfied to just walk into the sunset.

DanoT
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Wed Aug 30, 2017 10:13 am

maxlion wrote:
Wed Aug 30, 2017 8:22 am
DanoT wrote:
Wed Aug 30, 2017 6:59 am
mountaincat wrote:
Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:16 am


wally stays on as coach under a new gm? are you serious?
My prediction is that at the end of the season, as part of his retirement Wally gets to choose his GM predecessor, either Simon or MacVoy (sp) who then hires his own HC. OTOH Wally being Wally he might try to influence the hiring of the HC by appointing a GM and HC "team" with Jones or Washington being that HC. Personally, I feel strongly that neither one has shown enough ability as a coordinator to qualify as a HC.
This would be surprising and unusual. Why would Wally want to choose his successor as part of a retirement package? Where is the benefit to him? More likely, Braley might ask for his input. But if Braley is gone too, all bets are off. I don't buy this Wally as megalomaniac idea. Set in his ways, sure, but I suspect he will be very satisfied to just walk into the sunset.
If Braley asks for Wally's input, then Braley is not then going to slight Wally by ignoring Wally's suggestion after he asks for it. So Wally might get to pick his successor. A new owner if he or his president don't have a football background, then Wally might have major input as well.

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