Wednesday, June 29, 2011

British Columbia Lions: Season Preview 2011

Training camps are finished and the cut down day has passed, as we head towards the kick off to the 2011 CFL Season, we take a look at the previews for each team.

Vancouver hosts the Grey Cup this November, and with a brand new BC Place to show off to the country, the Lions most likely would like to be the host of the big party at the end of the CFL season.

Wally Buono, the Lions GM and Head coach starts the 2011 campaign with Travis Lulay as his starter, last years dramas of the Casey Printers return now firmly in the Lions rear view mirror.

The move of Lulay up to definitive number one spot has been well received by his Lions team mates, he arrived in Vancouver in mid winter to work out with the Lions staff and his receiver corps, a bit of familiarity that should pay dividends through the summer and into the fall.

The names of that receiving corps are familiar ones to CFL fans, Simon, Jackson and Peterson, all ready to snare Lulay's tosses and turn them up field. Should he get in a jam or Buono require a change of pace, Jarious Jackson will once again be on the sidelines ready to step in and turn the on field dynamics around.

The backfield could possibly have seen an addition or two, the bulk of the load to be carried by Jamal Robertson.

The Lions had some hopeful thoughts that Jerome Messam might have been a good fit into the Lions backfield, but he had disciplinary issues in the early going of the Lions camp and quickly found himself off to Edmonton.

His departure, if nothing else a helpful teaching moment for the Lions that Buono would be sure that the team came first this season, that individual issues would not be tolerated and would be dealt with quickly.

That template for the season may be a handy guide for the Lions as to what they need to do to make the 2011 campaign a success.

In order to be the "real" home team for the West when the Grey Cup kicks off, the Lions will need more than talent to challenge the Stamps and Riders, providing his team with the message that all of the players are working to the common goal could provide the Lions with the edge required to put some British Columbia content into Vancouver's Grey Cup week celebrations.

The task is a tough one this year, both Calgary and Saskatchewan are strong, with that same goal no doubt scribbled on a board sometime during training camp this spring.

It's who can best live up to the concept of one team, one goal that will dictate which team will claim the West title this season.

Some of the previews from across the media that cover the CFL season can be found below:

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