Tuesday Morning QB (CFL Week 9)

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It’s not something that really comes into the conversation on a regular basis in any league but this week it was the talk of the league.

Weather will always play a factor in a league with 8 outdoor stadiums in a country with some of the most unpredictable weather out there.

Weather will play a factor whether it be massive rainstorms that crawl across the prairies in the summer or snowstorms that bury cities in the winter.

That is always going to be a part of a league that spans a country throughout some of the most volatile regions in some of the worst parts of the year for weather is going to run into weather-related issues.

Over the last few years, things have only been worse as major storms have forced the league into multiple major delays.

Last year Winnipeg’s home opener took a total of six hours to finish due to multiple weather delays.

It seems to be a more common problem than ever and that is why the league and the CFLPA looked into what they could do to help reduce that chance.

As a part of the CBA between the two sides which was signed this year a new weather protocol was put in place to help to reduce the guesswork with weather delays.

A major part of that protocol is a rule that states that if a game is through the halfway point of the third quarter, meaning the game is official, and there is a weather delay lasting longer than 60 minutes the game will be called.

Most people didn’t pay attention to this when the CBA was signed as the fact that the season was saved was enough for most people.

People started paying attention in Week 9 though as the new protocol was put into place for the first time ever.football-sidebar

As the Montreal Alouettes and Saskatchewan Roughriders battled it out in a tight game the lightning rolled over Percival Molson Stadium.

The game was sitting at 17-10 for the Roughriders a little more than halfway through the third quarter of the game.

That is when the first lightning strike was seen and the game was put on hold with all of the players forced to the locker rooms.

As the delay continued on the word began to spread about this new protocol and that the game would sit at a 17-10 win for the Riders.

Eventually, that is what happened as for the first time ever the CFL stopped a game and would not play the remainder.

It was a blow to the Alouettes who continue to see their come back story fall short to heartbreaking losses.

The Riders took the win and continued their win streak even without playing through a very close game that could have been lost.

For many, it was a disappointing end to what was a good game and one that was shaping up to provide some fireworks for the end.

There will be some that say that an hour is far too short to call the game as there is still more time for the storm to pass.

If this game was more than two touchdowns away nobody would be saying that but that isn’t the case this time around.

The method behind the madness is sound, as the league and the union looked at weather delays and say what the dangers were.

With players going all out for over two quarters and then being pulled off for more than an hour things can get very dangerous.

It is far easier for players to get hurt going from warm to cold and back to warm again as even a warm-up won’t do the work that is needed to keep players entirely warmed up.

That is a major reason for the league and the union to put this into the new protocol along with looking towards the fans in the stadium and at home.

It might not have worked out in the best possible way for a game with only a touchdown separating the two teams but it is one that attempts to reduce those six-hour games.

With more weather issues sure to hit throughout this season and beyond this new protocol will likely be in-acted again.

Whether or not it goes over better will be a big question and Randy Ambrosie is not shy about making changes if something doesn’t work.

For now, though one game has been affected by the new protocol and as bad is it is for the Alouettes is is something that everyone agreed on before the season began.


Fourth Down

The New Class

This week marked the latest Hall of Fame Game for the Canadian Football Hall of Fame with a new class entering the Hall. The highlight of the class was one of the greatest Canadians to ever play the game in Jon Cornish. He was a constant in the Most Outstanding Canadian Award race, so much so that there is a movement to rename the trophy after him. He joined a great collection of talent alongside Mervyn Fernandez, Terry Greer, Ernie Pitts and David Williams along with two builders in Jim Hopson and Frank Smith. It was a good class that went in this weekend joining the legends of the game in Canada.

Exchanging Big Men

The Argonauts may have got their first win two weeks ago but there is still a lot of work to do in order for them to truly make a run. The bye week is a time for a team to make their moves that they believe will help them to make that run leading into Labour Day. Although the offensive line remains the biggest question, especially after the acquisition of Zach Collaros, that is not where the Argos made their biggest move. That would be another defensive move when they traded Shawn Lemon to the BC Lions for Devon Coleman with both teams hoping a change of scenery sparks something for the defensive linemen.

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