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Printers back in Lions’ den?

September 21, 2009 Leave a comment

Well, it appears the Casey Printers/BC lions drama has come full circle.  Fresh off a win over the Toronto Argonauts at BC Place Saturday which made him the CFL’s all-time winningest coach, Wally Buono has confirmed that he has had talks with former Lions QB and CFL Outstanding Player Casey Printers.

It is something that most thought would never happen, but with Jarius Jackson out for at least a month and Buck Pierce still not 100% from multiple concussions and what appears to be a rib injury suffered on Saturday, the Lions could very well be faced with the possibility of trying to resurrect the season and make the playoffs at the hand of one of two young and inexperienced QBs: first year Travis Lulay, or second year Zac Champion.  This is not something Coach Buono would like to have to deal with. Therefore, a call to his former starter, and controversial character Casey Printers was made.  Printers, though out of the game since his failed attempt at a CFL comeback with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, knows Buono’s system.  Without the luxury of a training camp to bring a QB up to speed on the offensive scheme, Printers seems like the logical choice.

Can the two put their past differences behind them and get the Lions back into playoff contention?  The next few weeks should be quite interesting.  After all, Casey Printers’ career has been nothing if not interesting.

BC Lions start 2009 season 0-2

I know the Lions started last season 0-2.  I know they ended up with quite a respectable record at the end of the year.  I know they won the Western Semi-Final and with a few breaks against Calgary might have gone  to the Grey Cup.  But this year seems different.   This year 0-2 looks like it could easily turn into 0-4…or worse.

Now, I am a HUGE Wally Buono fan, and I agree with 95% of his decisions.  He has clearly made this team a perennial threat to win it all since he has been here.  His penchant for finding talent, especially at quarterback is unrivalled.  I can’t argue with his coaching record either as he is about to pass his friend, colleague, and rival Don Matthews to become the winningest coach in CFL history provided he can win 5 games this season.  However, it looks like that is no longer a slam dunk.

With the departure of stars Cam Wake and Stefan Logan to the NFL, and Rob Murphy to the Toronto Argonauts, it can be argued that the BC Lions lost 3 of their 4 best players, Geroy Simon being the other.  That would cripple any team without question.  But to follow that up with the sending away of multiple-time CFL Outstanding Canadian Jason Clermont to the arch-rival Saskatchewan Roughriders, Otis Floyd who last week ended the Lions comeback attempt with a key interception for the Hamilton Tiger Cats, veteran Canadian lineman Kelly Bates, as well as stalwart defensive lineman Tyrone Williams many questions have been rised as to the direction Wally’s squad will be taking this year.

The above-mentioned names comprise half an all-star team.  They were replaced by….um, well…let’s see here…oh yeah, depth offensive lineman Walter Stith (now released), rookie lineman Dean Valli, previous year send-off and recent Calgary Stampeder cast-away Bobby Singh and a bunch of no-names and previous camp cuts.  The one pleasant surprise, in my opinion, has been import running back Martel Mallet, or as I like to call him “The Hammer”.   From what I have seen he has done a superb job filling in for the departed Stefan Logan.   I just wish they would give him the ball more often.

While it seems as though this article is full of criticism and laced with despair, I am very confident in Wally Buono’s abilities and the abilities of his staff.  I think the team will turn things around and make the playoffs and hopefully by then be firing on all cylinders and make a run at the Grey Cup again.  It is just not the near certainty it has been in recent years.