Dickenson still searching for answers to solve Riders discipline problem

Saskatchewan Roughriders Head Coach Craig Dickenson is once again finding himself back at square one trying to solve the Riders discipline issue that has plagued the green and white in 2022.

During his weekly appearance on the SportsCage with Michael Ball, Dickenson says they will be looking at different strategies this week.

Saskatchewan was penalized 11 times for 106 yards against the Alouettes, this follows a Week 2 performance against Edmonton where the Riders had 14 infractions for 134 yards.

When asked if removing players from the lineup as a repercussion was a possibility, the Riders Head Coach said he would if the move was required. “That’s the extreme action, if you have to do it , you have to do it. We will do that if we think that’s the only way we think we can get the message across.”

Growing pains for the offensive line were showcased in the loss to Montreal. Dickenson believes the unit including tackles Terran Vaughn and Na’Ty Rodgers will become elite players at the end of the season, but they must continue to improve from their current positioning. “Do I think our tackles  improved over last year, absolutely. Do I feel like they are where I need them to be, no. But we’re going to keep working at it”

He also pointed out the inactivity for the tackles over the last couple of seasons in prolonging the development of both players.

Dickenson added the front seven of the Alouette’s defence should be considered among the league’s elite.

Logan Bandy saw his first start replacing the injured Dan Clark at centre in Montreal and Dickenson felt the rookie handled himself well under the difficult circumstances.

” You’re always going to have a little bit of a dropback when you’re replacing a guy like Dan Clark who has played in the league for 12 years, 100 plus games and that was Logan’s first start against a very good defensive team, very good defensive front, there was a couple of communicating errors there’s no question, but for the most part Logan represented himself well , he never appeared rattled on the sideline.”

Dickenson added the guards and the tackles have to help provide support for the Riders centre.

One positive the offensive line has been able to display this season has been their ability to run the ball. The Riders Head Coach is confident in the green and white can establish a consistent running attack. “We want to be a physical football team and part of that you got to be to able to run the ball. Run the ball when the ball when they don’t expect it and even run the ball when they do expect it.”

The Riders return to practice on Tuesday in preparation for Saturday’s matchup with Montreal. You can catch the game on 620 CKRM, opening kickoff is 5:00.

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