Riders’ QB Cody Fajardo was right to apologize, but he wasn’t completely wrong

Photo courtesy: Saskatchewan Roughriders

It was a whirlwind weekend for Roughrider quarterback Cody Fajardo.

After Saskatchewan’s 23-17 loss to the Calgary Stampeders, Fajardo was seen angrily leaving the field at McMahon Stadium. In his own words, the franchise QB said upon a few days of reflection that he spazzed out like a child who had his toy taken from him.

For that, he was sorry. He promised not to leave the field early like that again as he wants to be a good example to aspiring athletes in the province.

Fajardo was also sorry that his mood at the time carried over into his post-game media availability. Odds are you’ve heard or read what Fajardo had to say after the loss. He was clearly extremely frustrated with the way the game in Calgary played out and let it get the best of him.

Fajardo stopped short of naming names, but he was tired of the “dink and dunk offence” they are essentially forced to run because of a lack of success on plays deeper downfield. Though I don’t believe Fajardo was upset with anyone in particular, you certainly could have read between the lines that he wasn’t happy with his receivers based on the number of times he talked about how they haven’t been successful with the “50-50 ball.”

Fajardo cleared the air with his teammates apologizing to them in person and again with the media for the comments. By all accounts, his teammates accepted the apology.

As a leader should, Fajardo turned the spotlight on himself suggesting he could have been much better in that game, which he definitely could have been.

All in all, Fajardo did the right thing coming out and apologizing for everything that happened on Saturday night following the loss to Calgary, but he wasn’t wrong. Fajardo could have been better in that game but he hasn’t received much help when it comes to getting the deep ball going, either. Whether that’s in the form of receivers creating separation or the offensive line giving him time for the play to develop.

It takes the right call and good execution from everyone for a play to work and so far, anything more than a few yards downfield has not worked for the Riders.

The only thing Fajardo did wrong was saying some of the things he did publicly and he could have taken more of the blame in the moment, rather than after the fact. One thing that many of us appreciate about Fajardo is that he wears his heart on his sleeve. He doesn’t lie to say the right things and that’s great, but it got the best of him on Saturday night.

Personally, I don’t mind what he said, especially as someone who writes and talks about football, but I’m not inside a locker room. I can understand why it didn’t go over well and required Fajardo to mend some fences.

Saturday night was a learning moment for Fajardo, he took the right steps to make things right with his teammates. Stuff happens sometimes, how Fajardo learns and grows from it is what matters now.

Joel Gasson is a Regina-based sports writer, broadcaster and football fanatic. He is also a beer aficionado.