We’ve all heard of the Los Angeles Rams' “greatest show on Turf,” circa 1999 in the NFL. Welcome to the 2019 Winnipeg Blue Bombers' “Fastest show on Turf.”

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 22/7/2019 (858 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Opinion

We’ve all heard of the Los Angeles Rams' "greatest show on Turf," circa 1999 in the NFL. Welcome to the 2019 Winnipeg Blue Bombers' "Fastest show on Turf."

Speed? Yes, this team has got it for days, in all three phases, but they might be the quickest show on turf simply because they are extinguishing their opponents in 30 minutes or less.

This team is so efficient right now, they’ve effectively removed much of the suspense, drama and intrigue of their regular-season matchups by severely manhandling their opponents right out of the gate.

Part of the fun in attending a CFL game is not knowing the outcome, or how things will unfold. Will the team struggle early and have to mount a late-game comeback? Will it be a see-saw battle with multiple lead changes? Will they storm out of the gate and hold on for a nail-biting victory? Will Matt Nichols lead a drive — late in the fourth, as time is expiring — and have Justin Medlock kick a game-winning 57-yard field goal?

No, actually. None of the above.

Nichols is probably watching film of the following week’s opponent on one of those tablets teams have on the sideline halfway through the third, and wondering how he is going to merchandise his Game Manager ball cap and clothing line.

If club executives want to increase attendance, they should start selling half-game tickets; this team is usually done with its opponent after 30 minutes.

"Come see the Winnipeg Blue Bombers beat the doors off their opponents for two quarters, at 50 per cent off regular-season prices, and make it home in time to watch the Daily Show with Trevor Noah! We would sell you the whole ticket, but you’ll only need the first half!"

Indeed. The last two games the Blue Bombers led by 31 and 27 points after only two quarters. Which, through no fault of their own — other than being absurdly good — has led to some rather anti-climatic, sleepy second halves.

In fact, you would have to go all the way back to Week 1, for the last time this team was down at the half, and that was only by three points to the B.C. Lions — before anyone knew the Lions were going to be this bad, and the Bombers were going to be this good.

Through the first five games this season, this team has outscored its opponents 111-37 by the end of the second quarter. That's not competitive football, that's a 30-minute ride on the pain train to the woodshed out back. Let that sink in for a moment: 111-37. That’s a 74-point differential, or more than 10 touchdowns ahead of their opponents halfway through the contest, in only five games.

This is similar to when boxing aficionados were worried about former world champion Mike Tyson’s conditioning, as none of his fights were going past the first or second round. He was knocking his opponent out seconds into the fight, so critics wondered how he’d fare if he ever had to wade into the later rounds.

There are no technical knockouts in football, whereby the referee stops a fight due to one contestant’s inability to continue, but if you’ve watched this team compete this season, not only should there be, but they’ve really only had to pay attention for four quarters twice: first against B.C., and later on against Edmonton.

Hyperbole aside, they go on the road to play the Hamilton Tiger-Cats this Friday — the top team in the East, and the second-best team in the CFL overall. If they continue on with this degree of dominance, against one of the few top-tier teams in the league, then who will be able to slow down this juggernaut, and put an end to their winning streak?

Doug Brown, once a hard-hitting defensive lineman and frequently a hard-hitting columnist, appears weekly in the Free Press.

Twitter: @DougBrown97

Doug Brown

Doug Brown
Columnist

Doug Brown, always a hard-hitting defensive lineman and frequently a hard-hitting columnist, appears Tuesdays in the Free Press.

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