Four reasons why the Alouettes lost in Winnipeg

Just when you think you’ve seen everything there is to see in the CFL, the Alouettes go and lose a heartbreaker in Winnipeg by a score of 41-40.

Don’t get me wrong, there’s still plenty of positives that came out of that game for Montreal (it was the most complete performance from the offence all season),  but because they dropped the decision in such dramatic fashion, that’ll be the focus of this story.

In my mind, there are four reasons why the Als didn’t come away with the victory on Thursday night.

1. Score from the one yard line:

Early in the fourth quarter, Montreal got down to the Winnipeg one-yard line thanks to a fluky scoop-and-run that involved a Eugene Lewis fumble and a B.J. Cunningham scamper. The Als had a first-and-goal opportunity from the Winnipeg one-yard line and they had to settle for a short field goal.

These things happen from time to time, but the fact that Darian Durant is in shotgun when he hands the ball off to Brandon Rutley is crazy in my mind. I know the Als fell short on a quarterback sneak in Ottawa last week, but there’s absolutely no reason to be in shotgun on first and second down.

Giving away those four points on the road ended up being huge.

2. Officiating:

Not to make excuses for the Als, but some of the penalties called against them were a joke. There were two roughing the passer penalties (one on Dominique Tovell, one on Chris Ackie) that proved to be crucial in the outcome of the game.

The saddest part of this whole ordeal, is that the Tovell penalty was reviewed and not overturned. The Ackie penalty came at a crucial point of the game. Calling bogus penalties at that point of the game simply can’t happen. It’s a tough pill to swallow.

As for the final play of the game, it’s hard to tell if Andrew Harris was down before crossing the goal line. In my mind, it looks like he’s down, but there’s no conclusive evidence to say that he was down for sure. Still, another crucial 50/50 call that doesn’t go Montreal’s way. It seems to happen a lot when Al Bradbury officiates their games.

3. Where’s the defence?

How about that prevent defence in the final 1:40 of the game, eh? What exactly did they prevent?

We’ve praised the Alouettes’ defence countless times for keeping the team in games when the offence hasn’t produced, but their performance in the final two minutes of Thursday’s game was tough to digest.

The offence handed them a 12-point lead with 1:40 remaining, and they allowed the Bombers to come back and win the game right before the buzzer.

Sure, the Ackie penalty affected the outcome of the final drive, but they gave too many yards away cheaply. On top of that, their inability to tackle on the final drive proved to be very costly.

I don’t like ragging on the defence because they’ve bailed the team out for years now. Unfortunately, in this case, it has to be done. The offence put up 40 points and it wasn’t enough for them to come away with the win.

4. The Blue Bombers executed:

It would be silly of me not to give the Blue Bombers a little credit here. In order for them to win that game at the end, they needed everything to fall perfectly in their favour over the last 1:40, and that’s exactly what happened.

Not only were they able to move the ball up and down the field when it mattered most, they also executed a gorgeous onside-kick to set up their game-winning drive.

Despite being in a 12-point hold, head coach Mike O’Shea, offensive coordinator Paul Lapolice and quarterback Matt Nichols never panicked. They knew exactly what they had to do and they did it.

Joey Alfieri

Joey Alfieri

A reporter and host for TSN690 radio in Montreal, writer at Rotoworld Hockey and Pro Hockey Talk.
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Joey Alfieri
About Joey Alfieri (31 Articles)
A reporter and host for TSN690 radio in Montreal, writer at Rotoworld Hockey and Pro Hockey Talk.

17 Comments on Four reasons why the Alouettes lost in Winnipeg

  1. Lorne Raber // July 28, 2017 at 3:12 pm //

    Bradbury is from Winnipeg and bent over backwards to make sure his home team does NOT get any favours. The bogus calls during the game were make up for the bogus calls that went Montreal’s way earlier in the game.Officiating sucks, along with the blind/moronic people in the replay booth. I did slo mo the winning touchdown form all 3 angles and int appears that Harris’s knee did NOT touch the ground.
    Sometimes a team that has been down for so long has to get some breaks, deservedly or not. It’s only been 27 years since the BB won the grey cup, even the Cubbies finally won last year after only 108 years.
    You are a Montreal writer and should defend your team, how do you think we feel with the Idiot wiecek writing negativity in the Winnipeg paper? At least you try…

    • Lorne. There were three views. Two were inconclusive. One was conclusive. His knee was down. After the CC made its call TSN stopped showing the third clip. The CC simply handed the W to the Bombers.

      • I have seen some screen shots showing Harris’ knee is not down prior to the ball crossing the goal line. When the ball does cross the goal line another player blocks the view of Harris’ knee. So not enough video evidence to overturn the call results in a TD.

      • Please share the conclusive video.

  2. View from my Couch

    I think the Montreal defense simply eye-checked the time remaining on the clock (1:40), eye-balled the score (twelve point lead), then closed their eyes,relaxed their minds and body and thought about where their zippered luggage was going to take them for s mini-vacation.

    By the time the fire-bells were ringing, no one could find the keys to the locked luggage.

  3. Amicus that is just incorrect. It was originally ruled a touchdown and video evidence was not conclusive enough to overturn. That’s how the replay rule is written. I also find it funny that the author mentions the poor calls that went against Montreal, but fails to mention to bad calls that went their way. Can’t have your cake and eat it too

    • Chris. Watch the third clip. It is attached to the posted article by Judy Owens on this site. It shows his knee down and the ball still in the field of play. Clear. Conclusive. Who was in the booth? Why the cover up!

  4. I agree Lorne. As I said in another post the command would have to of had their faces pressed to the turf to turn over a “called” TD by the refs. I have a problem with the system but that was the right call like it or not.

    I think Coach Osh must of hurt Wiecek’s feelings. When I read Tuesdays article all I could think was, dude get over it.

  5. Hors E Power // July 28, 2017 at 3:49 pm //

    Is the writer of this article suggesting Ed Bradbury is biased against the Alouettes?

    • i have said the same thing for years about al bradbury, they didn,t want montreal to win for one reason, toronto argos, its high time they cleaned out at tsn in toronto. if this keeps going, they will lose alot more people, i am one for sure, since 1959 i have loved the cfl. its getting worse week-end n week-out. sorry but i have to agree with the writer on this one.

  6. White Horse // July 28, 2017 at 5:05 pm //

    Dispite all the happy and ticked-off fans, it was a most enjoyable game to watch. Both teams deserved to win. Congrats to the BB.

  7. The Mtl roughing the passer penalities weren’t the only bad penalties called by the ref’s last night! The CFL is getting sickening to watch! Where has the new Commish been hiding through all this Crap??

  8. To say that wasn’t roughing the passer on the Bombers scoring drive is idiotic! Bush league knowledge of the game. You can’t lead with your head! I know people argue that Nichols lowered himself…but that is irrelevant! This author must be from out east.

    • Agreed, he lowered and lead with his head, that’s penalty time. He was so wide open he could have cranked Nichols legally easily, and that might have been the game right there. This Rider fan saw no reason to over-rule the TD, and there’s nothing more I would have liked, east over west always. Has to be definitive, and it wasn’t. The fact that we are arguing over it proves nothing was 100%.

  9. The clip in the Owens article is not conclusive at all. There is insufficient evidence to overturn the call on the field, and that would have been the case if they called him down before the goal line as well. Refs are human, they make the best call they can in real time on the field. This time it went Bomber’s way, but these things tend to even out by season’s end.

  10. gringo spy // July 29, 2017 at 1:22 pm //

    Too many people with conspiracy theories keeping them awake at night! There were bad calls on both sides, that’s sports.

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