Regain Championship Form
In 2011, Travis Lulay took control of the BC Lions‘ offense, stepped out of the shadow of his predecessors and lit the league on fire. He eventually crowned the astonishing season by clinching the 99th Grey Cup on home turf.
Last year, he took a step back in development as he struggled with a shoulder injury, an injury plagued offensive line and an equally banged up receiving corps.
Barring any physical setback to him or the surrounding groups essential to his production, Lulay should be poised to have a dominant season. Even with the CFL’s all-time leading pass catcher Geroy Simon and the electric Arland Bruce III no longer with the club.
So what should 2013 look like for the premier QB in the league? Here’s my list of accomplishments TL14 will be looking to capture this season:
Five thousand-plus yards passing. Considering he missed a couple of games with an injury, he still chucked for over 4,200 yards.
With young, talented receivers at every spot and the dynamic Andrew Harris taking passes out of the backfield, this number is not only manageable, it may be setting the bar too low.
Travis Lulay’s arm will propel this team to success. (Photo – Gerry Kahmann/Postmedia News)
Making it Rain
Like Pac-Man Jones at a Dallas gentlemen’s club, Lulay is going to be spreading the wealth; especially early in the season while he decides who the new No. 1 threat will be.
Last year, it was Shawn Gore. This year, a full-time Nick Moore, a returning Manny Arceneaux, and Ernest Jacskon and Courtney Taylor will all try to shine.
Options will reveal themselves on every possession, and with accuracy being the hallmark of Travis’ play, he could hit over 15 different targets throughout the course of the campaign.
The guy under center is pretty important; don’t get me wrong here. But the most influential person for the Leos this year could be Jacques Chapdelaine.
Last season, his offensive gameplans came under some scrutiny as they muddled along and failed to gain traction much of the year. The talk coming out of Kamloops is that the OC has put an emphasis on number of plays called and the speed of which the O will move from one snap to the next.
Much like the University of Oregon school of thought, streamlined play calling will enable more plays from scrimmage, ultimately leading to the highest number of pass attempts in Lulay’s career, and he could surpass last season’s passer rating of 100.7.
Stronger receivers, a dual purpose running back and more pass attempts. All signs point towards more touchdowns. It’s simple math in a complicated game. A healthy and protected No. 14 will most definitely see an increase on last year’s 27 TD passes.
Leave it to Lions GM Wally Buono to wave goodbye to two premier talents at receiver during the offseason, only to start the following year with a stronger group of marks.
No-one restocks the shelves better than the former coach; the undisputed talent evaluator in the league.
But as good as he is at finding gems, this season, much like the previous two, hinges on the dominant right arm of Lulay.
Cheers, The Bartender
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