Ed Tait

  • Blue have settled into losing as a way of life

    There are any number of ways to break down where things went wrong — again — for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers Saturday. And to examine where all that leaves this team and organization as another campaign slips away. Another slow start... too many turnovers... poor tackling... mental miscues... inconsistent offence... inability to run the ball... a huge disadvantage in the time of possession... muffed kicks...
  • Is it time to confirm the Blue are cursed?

    Can we make it official now? Can we confirm that the Winnipeg Blue Bombers are a cursed franchise? That the football gods absolutely despise this team and that a lower power is at work here?

    Can even the most cold-hearted cynics now acknowledge that when long-time Bomber coach Dave Ritchie declared to the troops, ‘Remember boys, it’s Us against Them and Them is out to screw us!’ he might have been onto something?

  • Making the pieces fit

    Just going out on a limb here, but based on what we know about Paul Maurice, let’s state fairly confidently there aren’t a whole lot of off-the-cuff, oh-hell-why-not decisions during the course of his day. That has to be especially true from the moment the Winnipeg Jets coach flicks on the light switch to his office early each morning. Every one of his decisions — from the AHL-heavy lineup the club iced Wednesday in Edmonton, to the line combinations, to the 11 players who were re-assigned on Thursday — is completely calculated and absolutely by design.
  • What about the champs?

    It was back on June 15 when Chicago Blackhawks captain and proud native son Jonathan Toews shook hands with Gary Bettman and hoisted the Stanley Cup above his head, the NHL commissioner’s words still ringing through the United Center: “Well Chicago, that’s three Cups in six seasons. I’d say you have a dynasty.”
  • Why are so many in Jets Nation eager to get rid of Byfuglien?

    Sometimes it’s hard not to marvel at the man. He stands 6-5 and weighs in at 265 pounds — give or take — and also has the kind of heavy shot that often leaves goaltenders thinking of a less-dangerous line of work. Like, maybe, as the front man on a bomb-disposal unit. So let’s all try to agree that Dustin Byfuglien is a unique talent in the National Hockey League. He is a powerful force of nature versatile enough to play forward and defence and, when he is really engaged, the kind of player who can completely take over a game.
  • Jets young stars improved but still have plenty to prove

    The skill was obvious with every dangle and every deft finish around the net. And Mark Scheifele’s passion for the game and boyish awkwardness in front of the camera still flashes even now, some four years later. Rewind to the Winnipeg Jets first appearance in the Young Stars Classic back in 2011 — back when this town was gaga over the jersey colours, spiffy logos and everything seemed fresh and new again — and Scheifele’s first days as a Jet in the Okanagan were drawing rave reviews.
  • Matt Nichols is in town but will not start this Sunday's Labour Day Classic

    Matt Nichols is here in Winnipeg with his new football team. He’s had his nose in the Blue Bombers playbook since sun-up, has a 5-2 record as a starting quarterback this season and is familiar with what the Saskatchewan Roughriders do defensively. But he will not – repeat NOT - start this Sunday’s Labour Day Classic.
  • Make the call: give Nichols the ball

    It was a deal that cost the Winnipeg Blue Bombers just a conditional seventh-round draft pick. The conditions being — rumour has it — that Matt Nichols actually made it to River City as planned Wednesday night, that he still has a pulse and, perhaps most important, that he understands consistently one-hopping throws to receivers is not a good thing. A shrewd little deal for a veteran quarterback completed, the question in Bomberland instantly becomes this:
  • Watching film no answer

    They’ll watch the film. Oh, will they watch the film all right. In fact, they’ll watch the hell out of it in the next few days. That’s what the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, to a man, spit out ad nauseum after every defeat. They won’t point fingers, they won’t call anybody out publicly.
  • Quarterback fine, supporting cast lacking in Bombers' Friday night loss

    He was so dehydrated the index finger on his throwing hand cramped up. And the stomach virus that popped up in the hours before his first pro start had Robert Marve ralphing not long after the ball was put on the tee for the opening kickoff. He made some mistakes, maybe forgot some lines and was forced to ad-lib a bit. But as debuts go, what Marve did in the Winnipeg Blue Bombers 27-20 loss to the Toronto Argonauts Friday night was enough to earn him another start and a run at the quarterback gig until Drew Willy returns in the fall.
  • Shellacking gives rise to five things that grate on Tait

    Free Press football writer Ed Tait weighs in on a variety of butt-kicking related subjects in the wake of Saturday night’s Bombers loss, a 32-3 spanking administered by the Eskimos in Edmonton... 1. If the Canadian Football League truly wants to protect its quarterbacks, as it insists, then the early-season results mean officiating crews get a big, fat ‘F’ for their handiwork.
  • Bombers' victory over Als is the first step in winning back fans

    They built the beer snake — again — proudly and meticulously piecing together a lager-and-ale inspired masterpiece of plastic cups. They kept the Rum Hut humming — again — proudly and meticulously piecing together Saturday morning hangovers like sailors on shore leave.
  • Bombers host Ticats: Five storylines

    Five storylines to ponder before tonight's CFL game at Investors Group Field:


  • Armed with plenty of picks, Jets have room to move up

    If Kevin Cheveldayoff has learned anything in his four years manning the helm of the Winnipeg Jets draft table it’s this: When the names start flying it’s imperative to keep your eyes and ears wide open, listen to absolutely everything and anything and be ready to pounce. After all, those NHL movers and shakers that stick their heads in the sand and don’t trust their own draft boards can be cursing their mistakes for years to come.
  • Young talent puts pressure on Pavs

    Not too long ago, Ondrej Pavelec packed up his goaltender pads for the summer following a season that ended with him earning fist-bumps and backslaps for his resiliency and perseverance. Not only did the 27-year-old set career highs for goals-against average, save percentage and shutouts — three of those zeroes coming in the last week of the season when he helped his Winnipeg Jets secure that coveted playoff spot — he was also the club’s Masterton Trophy nominee and finished the spring as the No. 1 puck-stopper for the Czech Republic at the world championship right in his own backyard.
  • O'Shea upset with loss

    The result meant nothing. The Winnipeg Blue Bombers knew that going in, ditto for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.  
  • Jets have some holes on the starboard side

    Take a quick glance at the Winnipeg Jets organizational depth chart — from big-league club right down to the last late-round draft picks — and a couple of common themes emerge: 1. The prospect pool, as has been well documented over the last year or so, is stocked with some intriguing pieces.
  • Jets have upgraded at the big-league level and also stockpiled what’s in the system

    His face was everywhere this week as part of what is now a series of iconic images. Yes, there was Jonathan Toews, again, grinning and dropping a celebratory F-bomb as he hoisted the Stanley Cup right after the Chicago Blackhawks had captured their third title in the last six years. The Winnipeg product has morphed into THE perfect representation of a captain — skilled, respected and fiercely intense.
  • Five takes: Bombers vs. Argos

    TORONTO -- Baseball legend and quote machine Yogi Berra once said, "a guy can observe a lot just by watching." With that in mind, here are our five quick takes the morning after the Winnipeg Blue Bombers' preseason debut here in the Centre of the Universe... 1. Bomber head coach Mike O’Shea and his staff have a few days yet before the inevitable — they must slice their roster down to 65 by Sunday night — and while some decisions were  made for them in Tuesday’s 34-27 victory getting down to that number won’t be a slam dunk.
  • CFL: No-names have same chance as big names

    The man once considered the poster boy for Canadian Football League opportunity is standing on the sideline on the opening day of Winnipeg Blue Bombers training camp. Arms folded across his chest, eyes shaded by sunglasses, he strikes a rather authoritative pose watching the new recruits. Looking back at his first day -- some 20 years ago now -- the opening chapter of his unlikely career in pro football began inauspiciously enough. Racing out to his first-ever training camp in Brandon, he was pulled over by police somewhere on the Trans-Canada Highway between Winnipeg and the Wheat City.
  • Coming on strong

    The enormous chasm that once separated the Winnipeg Jets from the NHL's elite might have once been called The Great Divide. Yes, when it came time to comparing the Jets to the NHL's Final Four over the past few springs, the differences were many and clear cut. It started with iffy goaltending and ran right through questions about the depth to a defensive foundation that had all the stability of a sand dune.
  • What's next in JETSVILLE?

    There's a theory floating out there on Cloud 9 -- still crowded with Winnipeg Jets faithful locked arm in arm and singing merrily -- that GM Kevin Cheveldayoff has absolutely nailed this draft-and-develop blueprint. So the Jets boss now needs only to ease back in his comfy chair, throw his feet up on his desk and light up a celebratory stogie. Playoffs? Heck, yeah. Been there, done that. And surely there will be more to follow now, year after year after year.
  • Five takeaways ahead of tonight's game

    Five takes as the Winnipeg Jets ready to face the Anaheim Ducks tonight in Game 3 of their Western Conference First Round series. 1. Snow. Of course, snow. It makes sense that if the Stanley Cup playoffs are returning for the first time since 1996 and this town is truly going to embrace the Winnipeg Whiteout thing that – for full effect – we should all wake up to a light dusting of the white stuff this morning. That said, I’m sure my initial reaction when looking out the window was the same as just about everybody in River City – a string of expletive deleteds that we simply can’t use in this space.
  • Jets couldn't silence Ducks' big guns

    Five early morning takes after a late night watching the Anaheim Ducks take a 1-zip lead over the Winnipeg Jets in the opener of their Stanley Cup playoff series... 1. The Jets were far from awful in Game 1, but when it mattered most penalties proved costly and the Ducks' big guns – namely Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf – blasted away to be the difference makers, teaming up for three goals and seven points (Perry: 2G, 2A; Getzlaf: 1G 2A).
  • Hawks goalie could be next no-name star

    Chances are 99.9 per cent of all Stanley Cup playoff pools on this green earth include the names Stamkos, Toews, Nash, Getzlaf, Tavares, Tarasenko and one -- or both -- of the Sedins brothers. Still, one of the coolest things about the annual Cup derby is how often players who don't get plucked in pools -- fourth-liners, third-pairing defencemen and backup goalies -- emerge as heroes every spring. And the name that everyone references at this time of year is John Druce, the former Washington Capitals forward who, after potting just eight goals in the 1989-90 regular season, scored 14 times in the playoffs to propel his squad into the conference final for the first time.


Would you trust a self-driving car?

View Results

Ads by Google