Offence too little, too late

MIKE KOREEN -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:13 AM ET

HAMILTON -- Not only do the Hamilton Tiger-Cats have two ineffective quarterbacks, they employ a bitter marquee wide receiver.

The Ticats (0-2) enter a bye week with some serious offensive problems after a 23-21 loss to the Saskatchewan Roughriders last night in the home opener at Ivor Wynne Stadium.

In the wake of disappointing performances from starting quarterback Danny McManus and backup Marcus Brady, new wide receiver Chris Brazzell, who had just two receptions, loudly expressed his displeasure with his role.

"There are other receivers on this team, shorter guys, getting all the opportunities on all the deep balls," said Brazzell, signed in the off-season after playing for the B.C. Lions in the Grey Cup last year. "If we're going to throw the ball deep and give some people opportunities, let me get at least one of them. I didn't get none of them."

Of course, Brazzell needs a quarterback to get the ball to him and the Ticats' throwers are not looking too good. A near-sellout crowd of 29,032 gave Brady a loud ovation when he replaced McManus late in the third quarter. But Brady wasn't exactly the saviour as he fumbled twice, leading to the re-insertion of McManus late in the fourth. McManus led the Ticats on two late touchdown drives for the team's first offensive majors of the season, but it was too little, too late.

"Offensively, we've got to be a lot more helpful to this ball club," said McManus, who was 13-for-29 for 148 yards with one touchdown and one interception. "Defence and special teams are playing well and we're not. I think everyone on the offensive unit knows that. Offensively, I know from my standpoint, I'm not playing the way the quarterback needs to be playing for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats."

Brady, however, didn't do anything to prove he should be the No. 1 guy.

"We played Marcus for the third quarter. Maybe they (the fans) could throw and we'll get one of the fans out there to play quarterback," Ticats coach Greg Marshall said when asked about the fans who are calling for a switch.

"We've got what we've got. That's it ... I can't pull a quarterback out of a hat right now. We believe in Danny."

Meanwhile, Ticats receiver D.J. Flick was diagnosed with bruised ribs and will be evaluated today after he was pulled off the field on a stretcher in the first quarter.

Julian Radlein and Craig Yeast scored touchdowns for the Ticats, while Chris Szarka and Matt Dominguez did the same for the Roughriders (2-0), who face the Argos at the Rogers Centre next Saturday.


Videos

Photos