There is a lot of chatter out there about the Bombers needing to make a change at wide receiver following Adarius Bowman’s two jaw-dropping drops in the 17-13 loss to Toronto Sunday. Both those drops – two more bobbles on his lengthy list of knockdowns – were put to him right on the money, so trying to find any excuse regarding a bad throw or a tough body position, or anything like that, is a poor argument.
(As an aside here, I realize Terrence Edwards had a bad drop against the Argos, too. Funny how production correlates to the length of rope a player gets.)
Anyway, back to Bowman. Head coach Paul LaPolice revealed nothing today when asked about Bowman’s standing with the club, saying that the coaches and management evaluate every player following a game. Fair enough. But what are the options regarding Bowman?
1. Keep him: Like it or not, Bowman might have too many positives in the eyes of the Bombers. He’s an impressive specimen (listed at 6-foot-3, 223-pounds), he can run, and he’s probably the Bombers best downfield blocker. He has 659 yards and three TDs this season. OK numbers after 11 games (not great), but good enough for 11th among CFL pass catchers. Oops. Receivers! I meant to say receivers.
2. Release him (or trade him): Most fans are tired of this topic and would probably like to see this option instituted this week. The problem is: Can GM Joe Mack find someone out there who is better than Bowman and someone who will help the club? He hasn’t so far and you can’t cut a guy without a Plan B.
Building on that, consider the other Bombers receivers on the roster for a second:
- Edwards: Import; making a case for the Bombers MVP this year. He has 54 catches for 959 yards and eight TDs. Those numbers lead the Winnipeg receiving corps.
- Aaron Hargreaves: Non-import; eleven catches for 97 yards and zero TDs.
- Chris Davis: Import, sixteen catches for 184 yards and one major.
- Brock Ralph: Non-import; twenty-six grabs for 317 yards and one score.
- Terence Jeffers-Harris: Import; missed six games with a high ankle sprain and will probably miss a couple more. Had 21 catches for 317 yards and three TDs before going down.
- Cory Watson: Non-import; lost his starting spot to Hargreaves.
- Jamayel Smith: Import; one catch for seven yards in three games.
- Scott McHenry: Non-import; no catches. Special teams.
- Greg Carr: Import; toiling on the practice roster.
After looking at that list, an argument can be made that Bowman is the least of the Bombers worries at receiver. Collectively as a unit, they have to be better here. Drop the Bowman drops – depth at the position is the biggest issue. Given the lack of it, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Bombers hold on to Bowman. Having said that, it wouldn’t surprise me if they drop him, either.