Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Five Questions As The Montreal Alouettes Prepare For The Calgary Stampeders

As the Montreal Alouettes prepare for their first regular season game against the Calgary Stampeders at McMahon Stadium.

Here are some five questions of what to look for during their opening tilt on Canada Day.

Five things to keep an eye out for

How fast can the team defense adjust to the new principals, schemes, and pace of Jeff Reinebold's defense?

With the shock hiring of the former Winnipeg Blue Bombers head coach to oversee this unit, it would be intriguing to see how well this group plays in the 3-4 formation.

So far during the preseason the defense looks solid as they accumulated nine sacks. But now it is for real, and the Alouettes get a great test against a Stampeders offense considered to be one of the best in the CFL.

Management did sign a plethora of defensive players to bring in a new attitude to this group that towards the end of the 2011 season was ineffective.

The only issue is how fast could they develop team chemistry.

Will Anthony Calvillo be able to go unscathed during the regular season?

In the last few years, Calvillo has suffered injuries that could have ended his season. But he continues to come back.

Without question the team's success is based on Calvillo being healthy. If he is injured for a long stretch of the season, it could be a tough uphill climb considering how the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, and Toronto Argonauts look prime to make a run for the division title. Furthermore, his long time backup Adrian McPherson did not have a strong preseason.

Calvillo will need his offensive linemen to protect well, and he will need to make the correct read to avoid getting any unnecessary body shots from the opposition.

Could the special teams make a game changing play?

During the Grey Cup runs the Alouettes prided themselves on their special teams making a game changing play.

Last year, it seemed this unit withered away as they could not muster anything in-favour of them.

Fast forward to present time, in-order for Montreal to be successful they will need the special teams to give them better field position, and more points on the board. Now, have they identified the players who could bring a different element onto the field. We will find out this Sunday.

Who will step up into the leadership role?

Already the team's fan base was not too happy when the Alouettes decided to part ways with the popular Anwar Stewart.

Even though it was only three years ago when the they won the Grey Cup, the likes of Bryan Chiu, Ben Cahoon, Avon Cobourne, Matthieu Proulx, and Stewart are no longer apart of the organization.

Who from the next generation of players will step up to the plate, and take on this role to continue the excellence of winning that was established by the previous leadership council.

How focused is Dwight Anderson?

There is no denying how close Anderson is with his former teammates in Calgary.

Once again, could he get too excited playing his former cohorts? Even though his first season did not end too well, it seems that Anderson looks more focused to repay the faith that coaching staff has in him.

If he could display the old form from a few seasons ago, it will go a long way in helping the Alouettes secondary reclaim their confidence that they lost during the 2011 season.

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