A speedy recovery, Mr. Willy
Backup Brohm, alas, just can’t make anything happen
EDMONTON — The Winnipeg Blue Bombers have some pivotal problems to address.
Not only did they exit Saturday night’s 32-3 loss with No. 1 quarterback Drew Willy’s right knee wrapped in ice, the work of reliever Brian Brohm was hardly inspiring and head coach Mike O’Shea continues to suggest third-stringer Robert Marve is not healthy enough to go into a game — even though he has dressed for the last two weeks.
The Bombers will evaluate Willy’s knee again today, making him doubtful for next week’s home date with the B.C. Lions. Brohm connected on just 9- of-19 passes for 71 yards while being intercepted twice. The attack didn’t just stall with him at the controls, it screeched to a halt.
Now, there’s nothing Brohm could say after the game — or will say this week — that will convince Bombers faithful he can not only move the chains but lead the club to victory. But for what it’s worth, here’s a chunk of what he said in a morose Bombers locker-room:
“Sometimes you don’t get all the breaks and things were kind of going the wrong way today,” he said. “That happens in football. Hopefully that balances out sometimes and you get some breaks going your way. But overall I need a better performance.”
And if he’s called upon to take the first snap behind centre next week?
“I’m ready. There’s no wavering in my confidence level. Obviously, there’s things I need to work on and get better at and I plan on doing that. It’s a short week, but I’m going to get in lots of film, get right to work and just try to get better every day.
“That’s my job, to be ready to go whenever I’m called upon. I feel that I know this offence, I’ve been in this offence for a year-and-a-half now and I feel like I can go in there and be successful whenever I’m called upon. I have confidence in myself and I need to go out there and show it on the field and show everybody what I’m capable of.”
And what are those things he needs to work on?
“A couple of those balls, accuracy-wise. I’ve been working on that throughout the year but I need to make a few better throws and that’s going to be my focus... seeing the defence well and going where I’m supposed to go with the football. I just need to make those plays, make those throws.”
O’Shea explained afterward Marve dressed despite not taking a snap all week because Dominique Davis, recently scooped up after being cut by Calgary, doesn’t yet have a grasp of the offence. Marve paced up and down the sidelines after Willy’s injury and even put his helmet on as if he was going into the game, but spent more time sitting on the trainer’s table beside and did not even throw passes on the sidelines.
“We talked about this earlier... Robert Marve didn’t take snaps all week and that (possibly inserting him in the game) wasn’t the reality we were living in this week,” said O’Shea. “He’s been dealing with an issue and it sort of got a little worse in Calgary (in the pre-game warmup).
“(Brohm) was dealt a tough hand. Once again, I’ll watch the film with the offence and come up with a better opinion. Every person that steps in in that situation is behind the 8-ball because they haven’t taken the reps in practice. Whatever happens in this coming week with Drew and the other quarterbacks, if Drew can’t take reps in practice, if Drew can’t play, then Brian will fare better because he’ll get all the snaps.” ed.tait@ freepress.mb.ca
Winnipeg Blue Bombers quarterback Brian Brohm was completely ineffective in relief of starter Drew Willy.