Time for Blue to step up

PAUL FRIESEN -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 10:47 AM ET

And here I thought the week off would dull the pain caused by watching the Winnipeg Blue Bombers' last two games.

Instead, we're reminded all over again how punchless the Bombers have been since starting quarterback Kevin Glenn went down.

Anybody notice what the Saskatchewan Roughriders did this past weekend?

Going into their game with Hamilton, the Roughies were without starting quarterback Kerry Joseph. That should have been worth a drop of at least seven points on its own.

Then they lost backup Marcus Crandell early against the Tiger-Cats -- and proceeded to put up some 450 yards and 46 points (including seven by their defence).

Now, if this had been the Bombers -- wait, it was the Bombers, Aug. 4, against the same Ticats! Remember what happened?

The Bombers scored one offensive point over nearly three quarters, changing quarterbacks like underwear along the way.

A week later, against B.C., they tried the other approach, wearing their starter, Mike Quinn, until it looked like he'd been turned inside out.

That's not pretty with underwear, and it wasn't pretty with Quinn.

In a 32-5 loss to the Lions, the Bomber offence tripled its output -- three offensive points!

So, to recap, since Glenn tweaked his knee, the Winnipeg "attack" has generated four points in just under seven quarters.

We bring all this up as the Bombers prepare for, in all likelihood, one, last game without Glenn.

Instead of watching film of the incoming Toronto Argonauts, maybe the Bombers should check out how Saskatchewan managed to romp over Hamilton.

If they did, they'd see a neat trick in which both 'Rider backups, Crandell and Rocky Butler, actually generated touchdowns.

They'd marvel at the ability of an offensive line and running back, Kenton Keith, to take over a game, and of a coaching staff to recognize pounding the ball was the way to go.

Crandell and Butler combined to throw just 21 passes, while the 'Riders ran the ball 32 times. Neat trick, eh?

When the 'Riders did put the ball up, their receivers actually made some plays, another notion the Bombers might want to borrow.

What we're saying is, it's time for somebody, quite a few somebodies, actually, to step up.

That means you, Brad Banks, if you get the start at quarterback Friday.

It means you, Chris Brazzell -- and don't count on Milt Stegall coming back and doing it all, with his ribs still on the rebound.

It means you, Charles Roberts. And every one of you offensive linemen.

Yeah, Barrin Simpson, your defence, as good as it's been most of the first half, has to crank it up another notch, too.

Because if you don't, that little space between you and the third-place Argonauts will become almost indecipherable.

A Winnipeg loss would drop both teams to 5-5, and while the Bombers have the tiebreaker based on two previous wins over Toronto, the Argos will own something even more important: momentum.

Heck, they've got it already, with back-to-back wins.

The Bombers? They've got to be wondering how good they are.

The doubts have to be creeping in. Maybe that 5-2 start was a bit of a mirage. Maybe the cream of the CFL is rising to the top, the scum sinking to the bottom.

When you lose, even if it's without your starting quarterback, your confidence gets knocked down a peg. Three in a row, and you're officially on a streak.

Streaks are hard to get rid of. They're not pretty.

That goes for underwear, and for losing.


Photos