July 2016 – 3Down Nation Post (the third)

I need to apologize for repeating myself. I can’t expect fans from other cities to understand the complexities of this team ANY MORE than they can expect me to do the same for theirs. It’s a world away and I have to admit to having but a passing and superficial view of their situation.

So when I read, hear or see someone reeling off the same tired clichés about this team, I grit my teeth and do what I must to preserve the truth, or what small part of it to which I have access. THIS is my latest effort in response to this video:


The Montreal Alouettes are a MESS.
This situation has been building for almost a decade. As a quarterback, Calvillo refused to allow ANY playing time for his backups…and Trestman was given carte-blanch (by Popp) to play Calvillo ’til he dropped. And when he inevitably DID drop, the team was left with reject quarterbacks from other systems, and rookies who’re expected to play WITHOUT ever having been given the time to develop.
To make matters worse, Calvillo was taken on as receivers coach, and then promoted to QB coach then OC in a matter of 2 weeks.
Calvillo designs and calls plays EXACTLY as if it were Calvillo who were playing. Since he had 2 weeks to learn the job…what can anyone expect?
Trouble is…static, dropback, pure pocket-passers are going the way of the dinosaur in the modern CFL. With defenders getting bigger, quicker and faster, quarterbacks are having to adapt. Part of that process is playing QB’s with the athletic ability to attack defenses with their legs.
Mike Reilly, Henry Burris, Darian Durant, Jonathon Jennings, Zach Collaros, Rakeem Cato…properly utilized, the skill of these athletes puts defenses on their heels and slows down the defensive pass rush.
But with zero experience with this kind of offense, and having had little time to learn “from the ground up” Calvillo is completely unprepared for the task of designing and calling an offense for this team and it’s future. His play designs are simplistic and predictable, and drop the QB back into the pocket 99% of passing downs…HONEY to a starving DLineman. Duron’s GF knows her stuff…this offense is fucking BORING!
Players are not stupid. And their livelihoods depend in part on the skills of their coaches and coordinators. Having an incompetent coach who’s getting paid because of his reputation and “draw” value is as corrosive as having a player in the locker-room under the same conditions.
Michael Sam, Chad Johnson, Troy Smith…Jim Popp’s underlings have had a steady stream of this kind of noxious, insulting, corrosive hiring philosophy.
So…as a GM Popp MAY have been acceptable at one point. But his CEASELESS “coaching” ambitions and his neglect of the finer points of recruitment and development have left this team crippled and reeling.
Montreal’s CFL franchise is yet again on the precipice…looking into the abyss. Part of the problem HAS TO BE a public that simply doesn’t care enough to hold people like Jim Popp’s feet to the fire. Part of it is a hopeless inferiority complex manifesting itself in infantile hero worship of athletes that frankly don’t deserve it.
Well we’d better shake it off because it’s crunch time, and the Alouettes may yet go the way of the Expos…AGAIN.


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