Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Lions Hope Healthy Offensive Line Allows for New Opportunities against Ticats

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Lions Hope Healthy Offensive Line Allows for New Opportunities against Ticats

Article excerpt

Healthy O-line key to change for B.C. Lions


SURREY, B.C. - After a rough start to the season, the B.C. Lions are hoping a week of rest and the return of some key players can help swing the squad's fortunes.

Quarterback Mike Reilly admits that the Lions (1-6) had different expectations for what they'd be able to execute offensively this year.

Seven games in, the former Grey Cup MVP has been limited to 1,668 passing yards with six touchdowns and six interceptions.

Making adjustments is simply part of the game, Reilly said.

"That's a challenge that I think every team in the league has to go through, on both sides of the ball," said Reilly, who signed with the Lions during the off-season, opting to leave the Edmonton Eskimos. "You have to be able to do that. And that's something we've certainly been working through in the first seven games of the season."

Coming off a bye week, the Lions are hoping their latest adjustments -- including bringing back some newly healthy offensive lineman -- will give the team a boost when they face the Tiger-Cats (5-2) in Hamilton on Saturday.

The offensive line has been a weak spot for B.C. all season, having allowed Reilly to be sacked a league-high 25 times.

Early injuries to stalwarts like Sukh Chungh and Joel Figueroa were part of the problem, but both are expected to be in lineup against Hamilton.

"Hopefully through the course of having all the guys healthy, we can develop some continuity," said B.C. coach DeVone Claybrooks. "When having consistency, you play better because you know what the other guy likes to do beside you. So hopefully that will turn into Mike not getting hit too much and getting more ball control and better on offence."

The Lions have also added a new face to the O-line, bringing in Justin Renfrow from the Calgary Stampeders.

The 29-year-old Philadelphia native said he learned of the deal via an Instagram notification.

Leaving Calgary was tough because he was very involved in the community, he added.

"But when it came to the football side of me, I've been waiting for a chance to play," said Renfrow, who's expected to start at right tackle for B. …

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