TROIS-RIVIÈRES – Before I give an update on the conflict between the players and the coaches of the CFL teams, let’s talk a little about football while Vernon Adams Jr. was absent from practice at the Alouettes’ training camp in Montreal.
The Alouettes specified that the quarterback was already scheduled to undergo a CT scan.
“It’s just to make sure he’s 100%,” said head coach Khari Jones, who plans to have him on Thursday.
“He’s been good since the beginning of camp, his practices are going well,” Jones added, though Adams Jr. lacked a bit of confidence heading into Monday’s intra-squad game at the lovely Devils Stadium in Trois-Rivières.
At least Jones can sleep soundly because this year he’s banking on more depth at this critical position. The surprising return of Trevor Harris is a game-changer and the addition of Dominique Davis is reassuring.
“It is very significant, you just have to see what happens in this position. Just about everywhere I’ve been, more than one quarterback has had to play, and sadly, sometimes it’s four or even five,” Jones agreed.
“Having guys that can get the job done, that have been successful, and that has been able to bounce back from tough times, that’s huge for an organization. We have three quarters that meet these criteria. Nothing replaces experience in this sport”, continued the coach.
Honestly, Jones admitted that he didn’t predict Harris would return to the Montreal uniform in 2022.
“I’m pleasantly surprised, but I knew he liked his time here and the atmosphere in the locker room. When she didn’t sign a contract too quickly somewhere else, I thought that was a possibility. »
However, Adams Jr. is holding onto his early lead for the time being. Could something happen between now and the first game on June 9 that would cause Jones to change his mind?
“I don’t know. We’ll just keep evaluating the competition and we want the best scenario for our team. What I like is that they work very well together, they help each other. It’s the team that counts and that’s the mentality we want,” replied the technical.
There are already some injured, caution is required
All the better if Adams Jr. isn’t injured because several players are currently dealing with injuries. Therefore, William Stanback and Jake Wieneke have been unable to practice as has the first pick in the 2022 CFL Draft, linebacker Tyrell Richards. Also, Greg Reid injured his right knee when he fell to the ground while closely following wide receiver Eugene Lewis.
“We don’t think any injury is too serious. They are quite crushed players, it happens at this time of year. It might affect our plans for preseason games a little bit, we’ll see,” Jones reacted, hinting that some athletes on this list will not be able to face the Tiger-Cats in Hamilton on Saturday night.
Another starter, left baseman Philippe Gagnon, was absent, but it was for a family reason.
As Christophe Normand put it, “we’ve seen worse” in the CFL early in training camp, but it will be something to watch out for. Additionally, Jones interrupted the session for a few seconds to get past this message.
“The quarterback was hit in two plays, we don’t want that to happen again. »
Earlier in the day, he had also shown his displeasure with a failed trial. “Practice the right way or don’t practice!” »
But overall, the cohesion seemed to be there. From the stands we could see the attack explode, completing several explosive plays. That said, Jones was keen to add this caveat.
“It’s a little skewed because defensive players sometimes go to the quarterback, but they can’t tackle him. Therefore, the games continue longer than usual. You might think the offense is outrageously dominating, but we know, it shows on video. That said, I’m happy with the performance of the offense. Several guys are back, it helps not to start from scratch. They will look even better this year,” Jones said.
The next few days will allow us to better measure this data, but the insertion of Anthony Calvillo into the coaching staff becomes one more tool.
“AC helps quarterbacks every step of the way. It is displayed in the details, including your readings. It’s still a process, but now I know another coach is on their heels and it’s not me. It’s nice to have him,” Jones said with a smile.
Waiting for the player vote
Let’s finish with the file of the collective agreement. The players’ vote, in what the CFL says is its final offer, is expected to be known Thursday night. The impression coming out of training camp is that the coaches and players are eager for this to be resolved.
“I’m trying not to get involved and hopefully we can play,” Jones said simply.
“Oh, I hope so. You can feel that it is a distraction. We just talked about it… Are we going to practice tomorrow? What will happen? defensive back Rodney Randle said.
“Of course, it is boring and generates a lot of uncertainty. In any negotiation, there are pros and cons. Each player has their interests in a collective agreement so it is difficult for our negotiating committee. We are still in a gray area, but I have the impression that both parties want it to be resolved quickly, ”Christophe Normand deduced.
“If it doesn’t end soon, both sides will start to feel pressure. That’s the way it is when it comes to being able to miss games and lose money,” the winger concluded.
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