The BC Lions are in that rare position that most Canadian Football Teams can only dream about. They have two solid and now proven Quarterbacks in the line up, each equal to the task of leading their team to the playoffs. Casey Printers who took over for Dave Dickenson earlier this year when Dickenson was injured, has gone on to write his own chapter or two in the Book of Leo.
Printer’s success at QB has been nothing short of remarkable, considering his lack of playing time prior to his taking the helm this year. But since then with the exception of a two week period where the Leos stumbled a bit, Printers and the Lions have been unstoppable.
Not content to just keep the Lions in the hunt this year, Dickenson’s understudy has proven to be a marquee man himself, with a league leading 32 touchdown passes, a 66 per cent completion record and a laughably low 10 interception tosses (Danny Mac in Hamilton can give up that many in one game!) Printers has been turning heads all season as he helps his team rocket to the top of the CFL West and now seem poised to make a late November trip to Ottawa for the Grey Cup a priority booking.
Beyond the success on the field, Printers has added some excitement to the product with his mobile approach to the game, his long bomb tosses and his ability to use all the weapons in the Lions offensive arsenal to the teams benefit.
With Dickenson slowly working his way back onto the active roster it’s almost time to consider what Wally Buono will do regarding his QB situation. Does he risk his teams comfort factor and momentum by returning the ball to Dickenson? Or does he roll the dice and stick with the now proven understudy and ride that horse for the rest of the race?
Tough decisions for the Coach and GM, with a regular count of 29000 sets of eyes in the stands now the pressure will be on to make the right call. It used to be that a starter never lost his job due to injury, in the past the returning leader was tossed the ball and sent to work. But with three weeks left in the season and the playoffs on the horizon, that theory may not wash. The success of the Lions this year has been due to the versatility and talent of Printers, it will be a brave Wally that makes changes to what has become a very successful blue print!
For now a healthy Dickenson may just have to sit as a hell of an insurance policy, this season belongs to Printers, the team is where they are due to his leadership, it seems only fair to give him the chance to complete the journey.