Saturday, 6 June 2015

Mailbags In

I got a couple questions late that we'll throw in tomorrow's mailbag section. 
Hope this helps!

How is Shea Emery looking at camp?


• Shea’s in great shape and looks ready to go.  The reason you don’t have to worry a ton about a guy like Emery is that he’s the ultimate pro.  #11s one of those “first in the building-last to leave” type of guys.  He brings so much to the team, especially to his position group which features guys that haven’t played a snap in the CFL game yet.  The CDN LB has gone through multiple playbooks in his career, so adjusting to his new expectations will be smooth.  When you have Emery’s experience, football is football, and new plays are only a different way of wording things, so he’ll be a huge help mentally to whoever the coaching staff puts next to him.  Another plus is the leadership that he’ll bring to that defence.  Adding a Grey Cup winner, a former all-star, and a natural leader was one of the best off season moves that the front office made this off-season.  For a defence that is going to require a ton of pre-snap communication and moving around, he’ll be a calming yet direct voice amongst the chatter.


How are the back-up QBs doing?


• Kevin Glenn is doing great!  I’ve talked about him a couple of times in various mediums, so some may have heard this already, but it’s good to get it on paper.  KG has come into camp with such a great attitude, and it’s carrying over on the field.  He’s throwing the rock well, picking up on the offence, and leading the 2nd unit with confidence that is surely helping the younger receivers and Olinemen that he’s working with.  I think the media talked about his arrival so much when the Riders acquired him that it allowed him to come into camp quietly and just focus on playing football and being one of the boys to a certain extent.  

He knows that he’s here to be a #2 QB but he’s attacking every practice as if he were the starter.  That’s exactly what you want in your depth guys.  He’s not sitting around just happy to be back in the Green and White, he’s still got things that he wants to accomplish personally.  That drive alone and the way he practices will keep him focused, and ready for any workload that the team needs him for during the 2015 season.  

In the CFL you’re one snap away from being the starter and role players need to understand that.  Having KG around, on and off the field, will set the standard and provide a blueprint on how to be prepared for your moment.  That’s absolutely HUGE for a team that won’t have a lot of experience in some spots behind the starters.


• Brett Smith is adjusting to all the different faucets that the CFL game requires a new QB to wrap his head around.  For example, he’s got a decent arm, but it’s probably a huge eye-opener to realize that a receiver screen to the field commands all of the strength one has!  This definitely isn’t the field one is used to in America.

Like most athletic QBs that try their hand north of the border, Smith used his legs a lot in the first week in order to offset the fact that all of the waggles, offensive demands, and crazy defensive looks, are moving at the speed of light.  It’s a ton to take in for a new QB, and often times, if one doesn’t see something they like automatically, one uses their feet to make a play because it’s the easier characteristic to trust than going through a foreign concept while John Chick, and T. George are throwing offensive lineman right at you.

He’s not the first QB to have to adjust, and he won’t be the last.  He’s looked better as of late in pass Skelly, but will need to play well when given the opportunities during entire team periods.





How has Tino Sunseri looked in Practice?  Did he get a fair chance last year? Does he have the potential to be a #1 in the CFL?


• Tino’s done well thus far, and looks to be going about practice the right way.  The new offence is a lot for everyone to digest but he doesn’t seem like he’s behind the learning curve, or too far ahead of it.  It’s probably difficult for him to go from last years role, to a fair amount of uncertainty in this camp, however he has to understand that he can’t let his ego get in the way and start pressing for production.  The way he jumped onto the scene a couple of years ago, was by taking his shots when he got them, and being deliberate with his work.  He comes from a football family, so this is definitely not a battle that he can’t handle.

Sunseri had a GREAT chance last year to prove what he can do.  More than most QBs get, because he got sat down, and then given another chance to roll again.  Tino did well when he was thrown into action without much prep and got to be a gunslinger.  People were wowed with his ability to throw the ball, as well as the physical characteristics that he possessed.  Everyone came to expect long balls and TDs, which was unfair.  The problem was that when he went through the whole week as the #1 QB, and the mental demands were at an all-time high, on and off the field, he looked like he began to over think the game, and that led to certain inconsistencies.

Now that’s not a bad thing, Sunseri is still a young QB so he shouldn’t be buried for that.  But what it did do was limit the amount of shots that he may get moving forward.  This is a “what have you done for me lately” business.

Does he the potential to be a #1?  There was definitely bright spots during the ups and downs of last year.  #12 just has to do the mental work.  In his case, that may mean he has to slow things down, and just let things come to him. Make the easy throw, put yourself into a manageable 2nddown situation.  Things like that.  Now all he has to do is jump on his chance.  He may only have a couple left.  

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