It was supposed to be a fun afternoon where the Roughriders showcased themselves to fans in Saskatoon, but there wasn’t much head coach Chris Jones thought was fun about it.
“There wasn’t very many bright spots,” he said after just over an hour of play Saturday. “I didn’t see a whole lot. It was just one of those deals that for whatever reason the day when you have the most people at your practice, you decide you’re going to take the day off.”
There were few things in the game that he wasn’t concerned about. He didn’t like the execution, sloppy play, and said the ball hit the ground or was intercepted too many times. And then there were the penalties.
For the first time since training camp started there was a full complement of referees working with the team. They were busy.
“I told them to be very strict at the line of scrimmage because defensively we’ve been a little lax,” Jones said.
There was at least a half dozen offside penalties, but calls were also made for holding, illegal contact and pass interference.
“It makes me want to throw up,” Jones said.
“When you play like this you don’t win many football games if you have that type of execution. It’s not what we’re going to be about, it’s not how we’re going to do things and we’ll bounce back,” he added.
The coaches will spend Sunday morning in the film room breaking down what happened and making corrections, but despite being sick over Saturday’s performance, he said he doesn’t doubt the talent he brought in.
“The guys that do things the right way will be the guys that stay.”