WEEK 7 | LIONS DEFENCE STIFLES THE ROUGHRIDERS, MASON FINE SHOWS PROMISE
In Week 7 of the CFL season, the Saskatchewan Roughriders faced a formidable defensive challenge against the B.C. Lions, resulting in a 19-9 loss. Mason Fine, stepping in for the injured Trevor Harris, made his first start of the season as the starting quarterback, displaying glimpses of promise and facing interceptions against a stingy Lions defence.
The game began with both teams struggling to find offensive rhythm due to strong defensive play and penalties. Mason Fine’s performance, completing 31-of-40 passes for 278 yards, showcased his potential, but two interceptions hindered the Roughriders’ chances of mounting a comeback.
The Riders’ defence also put up a valiant effort, forcing four turnovers with three fumbles and an interception while registering four quarterback sacks. Despite the loss, the team’s defensive group remained tenacious throughout the game.
However, the Lions capitalized on their experience by having former Hamilton Tiger-Cats starter Dane Evans as their backup quarterback. Evans entered the game after Vernon Adams Jr. suffered a knee injury early on and efficiently led the Lions’ offence, securing the victory.
FANS WEIGH IN
Following the game against the Lions, Rider fans shared their sentiments. The word cloud of fan reactions reflected a mix of emotions, ranging from “tough” and “disappointing” to “promising” and “hopeful.” Fans acknowledged the challenges faced by Mason Fine in his first start and expressed faith in his potential growth as the team’s starting quarterback.
STRENGTHS & WEAKNESSES
As the Roughriders continue their journey through the season, fan sentiments have shifted regarding the team’s strengths and weaknesses.
Here’s how fans perceive the team’s top strengths and areas for improvement based on the updated statistics:
Top 3 Strengths:
- D-Line (42%): The defensive line remains dominant, recording quarterback sacks and forcing turnovers that disrupt opponents’ offensive strategies.
- Special Teams (33%): Mario Alford’s impressive performances on punt returns continue to be a game-changer for the Roughriders, providing an advantage in crucial moments.
- Team Chemistry (19%): Despite facing challenges, the team’s cohesion and adaptability have been evident on the field, especially with Mason Fine stepping in as the starting quarterback.
Top 3 Weaknesses:
- Injuries (36%): The team’s injury situation remains a primary concern, affecting key players like Trevor Harris and Bryan Cox Jr. Swift. Recoveries are essential for maintaining a solid roster.
- O-Line (33%): The offensive line’s performance continues to be an area that requires improvement, especially in providing enhanced protection for Mason Fine.
- Passing (28%): The Roughriders’ offensive passing game needs refinement, as evidenced by Fine’s two interceptions against the Lions.
GCCI WEEK 7
After the Week 7 loss against the B.C. Lions and the injury to starting quarterback Trevor Harris, the Grey Cup Confidence Index (GCCI) for Roughrider fans has dropped to -124. The combination of the loss to the Lions, the team’s injury concerns, and the uncertainties surrounding the quarterback situation has contributed to the decline in fan confidence.
HOT TOPIC: Quarterback Troubles?
Concerns have emerged among Rider fans regarding the team’s quarterback situation after Trevor Harris’ injury. A significant 68% of fans worried about the quarterback position’s uncertainty. Despite the apprehension, 66% of surveyed fans believe backup quarterback Mason Fine should be given more opportunities to showcase his abilities and manage the position.
Fans understand that Fine’s first start against the formidable B.C. Lions’ defence was challenging for any young quarterback, and we hope to see his growth and adaptation in the role despite the interceptions.
WEEK 8 PREDICTIONS
In the upcoming Week 8, the Roughriders face a formidable test against the unbeaten Toronto Argonauts during the Touchdown Atlantic game in Halifax. The Argonauts boast a 5-0 record and a potent offence. However, the Riders’ fans sound ready to rally behind Mason Fine as he faces his toughest challenge to date.
Fans hope that Fine will continue to grow and improve as the starting quarterback, with the support of the team’s top strengths: a tenacious defensive line, a game-changing special teams unit, and evident team chemistry. The focus will be on reducing the weaknesses, particularly addressing the injury concerns and enhancing the offensive line’s protection to create more opportunities for the passing game.
WANT IN ON THE ACTION?
Join us to discuss the coaching choices, players’ performances, and anything Rider-related at LetsGoRiders.com – one of Canada’s only fan analytic sites. It’s free, it’s fun, and it’s your way to join in on the community discussion.