Writing columns about Montreal Alouettes losses has become incredibly predictable, but here we are.
The Als dropped their sixth consecutive game on Saturday night, as they fell 33-19 to the Toronto Argonauts at BMO Field.
Montreal has failed to score a first-quarter point in any of those six losses, which is baffling. Also, they’ve been outscored 132-17 in the first half during the losing streak. That’s flat-out embarrassing. There’s no other way to put.
Although it isn’t mathematically official, the Alouettes’ playoff hopes are done. They’ve now lost the season series to both the Argonauts and Redblacks.
It’s time for them to give some of their young players an opportunity to get some playing time down the stretch. They have nothing to lose at this point.
As always, I manage to find positives even when things seem bleak. Let’s start there:
-A lot of players have thrown in the towel on the season, that much is obvious. But there are guys who still care. One player playing with a lot of pride, is running back Tyrell Sutton. The holes aren’t always there for him, but he keeps running hard even when the game is out of reach. He finished the night with 105 yards on 15 carries, which works out to an incredible seven yards per carry. Sutton is scheduled to become a free agent this winter, and the Alouettes need to find a way to bring him back.
-I didn’t mind the short-side duo of Jonathon Mincy and Brandon Stewart in the secondary. Both players broke up passes and both probably should have come up with interceptions at different moments of the game. Stewart even recovered a fumble on special teams.
-Some people may have thought that John Bowman’s sack celebration was uncalled for, especially because his team was down 26-0 at that point. I disagree with that sentiment. Bowman might be playing the final games of his outstanding career and he’s one of the few guys that had some jump. If he wants to celebrate after a sack, I’m not going to object.
-Despite being in his mid-30’s, returner Stefan Logan still has plenty of burst. I know the Alouettes need to get younger, but I’m not opposed to them keeping Logan going into next season.
-I’ll give some props to the defence. They gave up yards in the first half, but they managed to hold the Argonauts to field goals on their first four scoring drives. A 12-0 deficit isn’t impossible to come back from unless your offence is totally incapable of scoring points.
I was happy for Canadian receiver S.J. Haidara. He didn’t have a catch coming into this game, but he finished the night with five receptions. Haidara had an ugly drop in the second half, but he responded with a big catch on third-and-10 on the very next play.
-Darian Durant doesn’t deserve all the blame for his team’s brutal first half, but he missed plenty of receivers. Last week he threw passes in the dirt, this week he missed both high and low. On two specific occasions, he overthrew B.J. Cunnigham. In the first half, it resulted in a pick-six. In the second half, he almost got Cunningham killed. Durant’s been healthy this year, but this season has been incredibly disappointing overall.
-I’ve been clamoring for Ernest Jackson to get more touches throughout the season, but that was a disappointing effort over the weekend. I’ll give him credit for blocking well on a number of offensive plays, but he had some ugly drops for the second week in a row. One drop, on third down and three, resulted in a Mitchell White interception. A game to forget for Jackson.
-I’ve mentioned this before, but Chip Cox just can’t keep up anymore. He’ll go down as one of the best defensive playmakers in franchise history, he just can’t be a regular on defence anymore. S.J Green, who isn’t known for his speed, beat Cox, who was known for his speed, cleanly for a touchdown near the end of the first half.
-Every time it seemed like the offence was making progress, a silly mistake would creep into their game. Durant had a pair of nice completions to Tiquan Underwood in the first half. After the first one, Durant bobbled the snap on the very next play. Montreal was forced into a second-and-14 situation, and they failed to convert. On the second one, Durant got blasted by Argos middle linebacker Bear Woods, but he still managed to get the ball to Underwood. On the next play, he overthrows Cunningham for the pick-six I mentioned earlier. It’s crazy.
-How badly did Tyree Hollins whiff on Argos running back James Wilder jr.’s big 85-yard TD run? That was pretty bad.
-In general, the Alouettes defence had no answer for Wilder jr, who finished the night 141 yards on the ground (85 came on one play) and 77 yards receiving.
-Seeing Nik Lewis need help to get off the field wasn’t good. These might be the final games of his career, and I hope he doesn’t go out this way.
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