Argos talking long term with Jyles

Frank Zicarelli, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 2:05 AM ET

In keeping with Argos’ theme of drops, head coach and general Jim Barker dropped a bombshell of CFL proportions when he announced negotiations on a long-term deal with Steven Jyles have begun.

What potential terms, length and any guarantees, no one is saying because the process is so early, but the revelation does suggest Barker is hooking his wagons on Jyles.

Through this misery, which included a 27-12 loss to Hamilton Saturday night, it’s difficult to properly judge Jyles’ ability to run an offence when a line is so battered, when receivers can’t make plays or hold on to the football.

Before the game, Andre Durie tried to play, but couldn’t.

Sammy Tranks, who shows flashes, would tear an ACL in his knee and is now out for the season.

Jyles would roll an ankle and later reveal he suffered a mild sprain, but he continues to roll with each and every punch.

“I look forward to being around here a little more,’’ Jyles said of the potential for avoiding free agency and signing with the Argos, who traded for the mobile quarterback this off-season from Winnipeg.

The business of football, added Jyles, is up to his agent and Barker.

For Jyles, it’s all about finding any semblance of offensive continuity in the season’s five remaining games.

“My thing is to get the offence clicking, being effective and scoring touchdowns,’’ said Jyles.

Against the Ticats, all 12 of Toronto’s points were produced on four Noel Prefontaine field goals.

Whether it was a dropped pass by Chad Owens, Prechae Rodriguez unable to make a play in the air or a penalty, nothing was working for the Argos.

“Steven threw the ball well,’’ Barker said. “We didn’t make any plays for him. I thought he did a great job in hanging in there.”

It’s now up to Barker and his personnel people to find receivers.

One can’t accuse the Argos of bringing in receivers. The problem is that they haven’t found any with quality.

The team thought it had a work in progress in Demario Ballard, a 6-foot-6 specimen who was cut by the NFL’s Detroit Lions, but Barker revealed Ballard had to leave the club to tend to family matters.

“We have to find guys who can make those plays,’’ Barker said in reference to throws where the intended target must haul in the reception.

At least outwardly, Jyles is maintaining his composure, but admits it is frustrating when losses are mounting and touchdowns have become scarce.

“Any time you don’t score points, especially as a quarterback, you take it personally.”

The O in offence

A look at some of the more alarming offensive numbers by the Argos that emerged from Saturday night’s loss to the Ticats.

12 — the amount of first downs, which led to the defence being on the field for 36:09.

168 — total passing yards, but in fairness a drop pass by Chad Owens and Prechae Rodriguez unable to make a play in the air at the goalline hurt the team’s cause.

11 — Cory Boyd’s rushing attempts; even if a defence is intent on stopping a running back, Boyd needs more carries; Boyd averaged 5.5 yards.

27 — biggest play on the night in yards; in contrast, the Ticats had five plays of more than 29 yards, including an 89-yard TD run by Terry Grant when the Ticats caught the Argos in all-out blitz.


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