Als' Avon won't settle

IAN BUSBY, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 12:12 AM ET

Avon Cobourne hit the 1,000-yard mark for the first time in his career, carries the rock for the league’s best team, and still he wants more.

There is no question the Montreal Alouettes lean more toward the passing game, which can sometimes leave the running back feeling cold.

The East Division champions have the top aerial attack to have the top offence, and their rushing game ranks second to the Calgary Stampeders.

Just like any starting tailback, Cobourne wants more action, and he’s not satisfied with his production.

“It didn’t feel like a great year,” said Cobourne, who finished with 1,214 yards along the ground, good enough for sixth in the CFL.

“We passed the ball more.

I felt it was more balanced last year. I got most of my carries in the fourth quarter … We will pass, pass, pass and most of my carries are in the fourth quarter to run the clock out.

“It’s a little disturbing but that’s how our offence went.”

Cobourne did have a respectable 5.4-yard average, and he scored 13 touchdowns rushing the ball, which was better than both Calgary’s Joffrey Reynolds (11) and Edmonton’s Arkee Whitlock (12).

The 30-year-old four-year veteran added another 458 yards through the receptions, to move him up to fourth in yards from scrimmage.

But it’s the few chances to ground and pound that irks Cobourne, who had a much-publicized goal of 1,000 yards rushing and receiving last season that he didn’t reach.

“I didn’t feel I had a great year this year because that’s how we approached the games,” Cobourne said.

“I still had 1,000 yards but that’s not much in this league. A yard off the ball, you run on first down quite a bit so you should easily get 1,000 I think.”

When asked early in the week how much Cobourne would be used in the Grey Cup, Alouettes head coach Marc Trestman played coy.

There was plenty of talk about Cobourne being the sixth offensive lineman all week, but Trestman refused to dismiss the running back as an important part of the offence.

“We’re a throwing football team but we practice the run as much as the pass,” Trestman said.

“We feel strongly about our ability to run the ball. We’ve never hid from the idea that we’re a throwing team and Avon is aware of that.

“We also know he’s an extremely important part of what we do.”


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