Calling for cavalry

JIM BENDER

, Last Updated: 8:04 AM ET

It was like taking a paring knife to a gunfight.

Scoring six points in a CFL game just does not cut it.

But for Winnipeg's lone two victories this season, its offence has been rather pathetic.

There is a reason that starting quarterback Kevin Glenn was benched for three games, that head coach Doug Berry got more involved in the offensive gameplan and is now allowing Glenn to call his own plays.

But after what looked like an offensive revival against Hamilton, the Blue Bombers reverted to their old habits. They could manage only six points on a pair of field goals in the 19-6 loss to the Saskatchewan Roughriders in the annual Labour Day Classic in Regina on Sunday.

"We've got to make plays," said a frustrated-but-composed Berry after the loss. "Bottom line, we did not make plays. Whether it's the quarterback (Glenn) with his accuracy, whether it's the receivers (Romby Bryant, Terrence Edwards) not catching the ball, the offensive linemen blocking, whether it's the running back (Charles Roberts) getting to the correct hole, we didn't make enough of it happen.

"I felt we were consistent defensively and I felt we were consistent in the kicking game. We were inconsistent offensively and we've got to be able to get that thing going."

But nine games into the season and they still have not found a long-term answer? That, in itself, speaks volumes.

"It's about consistency because, in the first quarter, too, we had a pretty long drive and then did it at that end," said veteran offensive tackle Alexandre Gauthier. "But it's not about doing it twice in the game, it's about doing it every single time that the offence goes out there. That's what we're not doing. Like, we lose a few games, win one. Lose a few games, win one. We win one series and we lose three. It's about consistency and making sure nobody is making any mistakes.

"We just can't point any fingers. It's not one person. Everybody's working hard and giving an honest effort. That's the thing. What the problem is, I don't know. Maybe we're not playing together or whatever. The good thing is everybody still believes in each other but we need to stop saying that after every game. We need to win some games in a row."

And they need to cap off drives with touchdowns, not three-pointers.

"We need to work a little harder this week but we'll get it fixed," Gauthier vowed.

But they will have to get it fixed in time to be able to beat the CFL's top team in a re-match in this Sunday's Banjo Bowl.

"We've got to find a way to put it behind us and move on because we've got them coming in again next week," said veteran slotback Milt Stegall, who caught four passes for 44 yards.Although the Bombers fell to 2-7, the incompetence of both Hamilton and Toronto are keeping them in the playoff hunt.

"We're not out of it," Stegall said. "We'll stay optimistic and positive about our situation so, we'll watch this film, put it behind us and move on. That's all we can do."

Actually, we beg to differ. We'll stay pessimistic, not forget the recent ugly past and urge those in power to move some players on -- if they want to save their own jobs.


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