The gold rush for the Alouettes will not take place in the West, but in the East. During the rest week, the Montreal club found a treasure map that could lead to rich loot.
For a few years now, the Western Association has lived in its own world in the CFL. It is home to the best teams on the circuit, including the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and the BC Lions. That said, the way is clear in the East and it was enough for the Alouettes to leave in this expedition so far punctuated with success.
What are his instruments for this great crossing? The defensive? Or the offense? Maybe the special units? If none of the facets is dominant, collectively they all deliver the goods.
Even though the Alouettes’ defense was faulted in depth on a few occasions and the Ticats had to deal with the absence of a few executives, including quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell, their performance was more than interesting.
That same defense hasn’t allowed a touchdown since the start of the season. She hadn’t had that kind of two-game streak since August 2009. Anyway, things have been going pretty well so far.
“I’m proud of our defense that didn’t allow anything in the pay zone. That’s often what makes the difference in professional football games,” Alouettes quarterback Cody Fajardo said after the game in an interview with the club.
This statement of success applies to everyone. In fact, for the first time since 2011, the Sparrows started the campaign with a 2-0 record. A statistic that was beginning to date.
A small part of the visitors’ success could be attributed to Chandler Worthy, who returned a punt 77 yards to catalyze Jason Moss’ troops. After this touchdown, the Alouettes no longer looked back and dominated to such an extent that Ticats fans booed their favorites in the third quarter. This is not exactly how we want to see the first home game of the season end, especially when we host the Gray Cup final in a few months.
“We wanted to come here and send a message. We did that,” summed up receiver Austin Mack.
Austin Mack. A name that is likely to be spoken and written quite often this season.
The receiver had reached the 100-yard plateau in the first week of activity against the Ottawa Redblacks, but was unable to get a major. This week, it’s the opposite, with 81 yards gained, but especially two rather precious touchdowns.
The former San Francisco 49ers and New York Giants offered himself as a more than attractive option, making key catches. What’s more, the Alouettes needed receivers to step up after the departures of Eugene Lewis and Jake Wieneke.
Lewis was not just a receiver, he was in the running for the title of the most valuable player on the circuit in 2022. His departure therefore left a huge hole in the Montreal offensive. Fajardo recalls that the offense still has “a lot of work to do”, but this new version has found its ease.
The new Alouettes quarterback and Mack combined their efforts a few times, much to the chagrin of the Ticats defense, which was unable to limit the damage.
Another encouraging sign, running back William Stanback was more dynamic than in the first game of the season, making gains by running, but also by air. If the Alouettes stay the course, it’s a safe bet that they will be on their way to the Eastern Championship.
Earlier in the day, the Alouettes unveiled a third uniform where red dominates. According to the club, it was a project in the cards since 2019 which was delayed by the pandemic.
This fan-inspired jersey will be worn at least twice this season, including for the Sparrows’ next home game on July 1.
However, the concept of a third jersey is not new to the Alouettes, who wore gray a few seasons ago.