Argos offence stays with Andrus

TERRY KOSHAN, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 11:21 AM ET

His team is the worst offensive pro football outfit in Canada and is squandering leads on a weekly basis.

Yet, Argonauts head coach Bart Andrus yesterday defended his decision to take on a dual role as the offensive co-ordinator when training camp broke two months ago.

"At some point, we will have a co-ordinator, that will come," Andrus said. "But right now we are not going to change it during the course of the season.

"I'm comfortable where it is. The plan coming in, with the way the offence is how to set the philosophy, how to teach it. I felt like this was the right way to do it and our management felt like it was the right way to do it."

Except that through eight games, of which they have lost six, the Argos have scored with less regularity than most of the attendees at the comic/science fiction fan expo this weekend at the Toronto Convention Cntre.

With no previous Canadian Football League experience, Andrus should have hired someone who had a firm grip on the offensive side of the Canadian game. Andrus made a plethora of coaching staff hirings after he was tabbed in January to lead the Argos back to a level of respect and demoted Steve Buratto, who was the Argos' offensive co-ordinator last year, to special teams co-ordinator and running backs coach.

Andrus' history as an offensive mind led to hope in the organization that he would resurrect the career of Kerry Joseph, who was mediocre in 2008.

But the rebound of Joseph didn't happen, and he might not start again for the Argos. General manager Adam Rita was so confident in a happy Andrus-Joseph marriage that he signed the QB to a contract extension in the off-season through 2010.

Andrus confirmed that Cody Pickett, 0-4 as a starter in the CFL, will be the Argos' No. 1 quarterback for the foreseeable future.

"It's just the transition thing in sports," Andrus said. "Kerry is our backup and that is the way it is going to remain until Cody proves otherwise. We're very encouraged where he is right now."

Pickett passed for 311 yards and two touchdowns in a last-minute 23-20 loss to the Calgary Stampeders on Friday and might have a bright future, but the Argos need to win now.

Meanwhile, Andrus would not let kicker Justin Medlock, who was critical after the loss to Calgary, apologize yesterday. Medlock was miffed that he did not get a chance to boot a 57-yard field goal on the final play of regulation, which would have sent the game to overtime. Instead, Pickett's Hail Mary pass to Mike Bradwell was incomplete.

"He came in apologetic, and I said: 'Don't, it's on us,'" Andrus said. " After reviewing it, we would have done it differently and we will do it differently next time."

TERRY.KOSHAN@SUNMEDIA.CA


Videos

Photos