This last week or so was full of news from Bomber land. Some was good, some was bad and some was a little bit of both.
First the good. The Bombers signed coach Paul La Police to a contract extension. This means that the Bombers will have consistency in the front office and on the sidelines. However, it also means that the Bombers need to demonstrate going forward, that they have a plan to build on last years Grey Cup appearance. Whether or not Jones and LaPolice are able to accomplish this remains to be seen. Right now, the way the Bombers off-season has gone does not bode well for that, but I’m willing to give them the benefit of the doubt.
So, to the bad news. We learned this morning that the Bombers may still be playing at CanadInns stadium well into August. This is bad strictly from a dollars perspective. Given that CFL franchises all operate on paper thin margins, the lost of revenue from the new stadium will hit the Bombers bottom line in a negative way, and that can’t be good for the team. On the plus side, they now have a few extra months to not find ways to deal with the traffic nightmares.
Other bad news. The retirement of Doug Brown. I think, that throughout his time in the CFL there were years when Doug Brown deserved the award as outstanding player in the CFL, but being a defensive player who didn’t put up gaudy sack or interception numbers, that was never going to happen. However, Brown was a player who never quit on a play, and who always acquitted himself as the consummate professional on and off the field. Maybe we’ll get lucky and TSN will bring him on board. Although, given Brown’s articulate nature, he may be too good for the rest of the talent.
Finally, something that qualifies as both good and bad. Odell Willis was traded yesterday to the Saskatchewan Roughriders. While Willis racked up large numbers of sacks over the last two years, he didn’t come through when needed (See Grey Cup) and a good percentage of those sacks were offset by penalties of the 15 yard variety for unnecessary roughness, etc.
The real bad news in all of this, is that with the retirement of Doug Brown, the free-agency loss of Don Oramasionwu to the Eskimos, and now with the trade of Willis, the Bombers have some holes to fill on their front seven. All of which brings us back to the start of this blog. It’s good news that Mack and LaPolice have been extended, but now we need to start seeing some signs that they are going to acquire the pieces to make the Bombers perennial contenders.