Protecting Quarterback Mike Reilly will be the key to any success the B.C. Lions have this upcoming season.
Things can’t get any worse for the Lions than it did in 2019. After starting the season 1-10 through the first 11 games, they finished the year a dismal 5-13.
New Head Coach Rick Campbell has some work to do on the West Coast but he does have one of the more established Quarterbacks in the league in Mike Reilly. Despite a down year in 2019, Reilly finished the season as the fifth highest passer in the league, throwing for 3897 yards in 16 starts. Receiver Bryan Burnham has been a favourite target of Reilly’s finishing second in the CFL in receiving yardage with 1492 yards. Burnham has it all; size, speed, and a great pair of hands. The most impressive stat for Burnham is he led the CFL in 2nd down catches with 38. Outside of Burnham, there are plenty of question marks at the receiver position.
Reilly will enjoy more speed on the outside with the addition of receiver/kick returner Lucky Whitehead from Winnipeg (free agency) and in the backfield running back Shaq Cooper, joins the team from Edmonton and will likely be starter for the Leos.
The key to the Lions success on offence with be the offensive line. In 2019, it was a weak point for the team and got so bad that the team fired its offensive line coach at the midway point of the season. The Lions hope the addition of Offensive Tackle Ryker Mathews will help strengthen the o-line this upcoming season. Look for the team’s first overall pick in 2020 Jordan Williams to get a legitimate chance to start at Linebacker. The standout Canadian was a force for the East Carolina Pirates in the NCAA last season.
B.C. Lions 2021 CFL Schedule
The Lions finished the 2019 season out of the post season picture but have high hopes of contending this season. The Leos will open the season with back-to-back games on the road in Regina week one followed by a visit to Calgary in week two. The team will have the benefit of closing out the regular season with back-to-back home games against the two Alberta rivals.
Friday, August 6 at Saskatchewan Roughriders
Thursday, August 12 at Calgary Stampeders
Thursday, August 19 at B.C. Lions
Saturday, August 28 vs. Ottawa RedBlacks
Saturday, September 18 at Montreal Alouettes
Saturday, September 24 vs. Saskatchewan Roughriders
Friday, October 1 vs Winnipeg Blue Bombers
Saturday, October 16 vs. Calgary Stampeders
Saturday, October 23 at Winnipeg Blue Bombers
Saturday, October 30 at Toronto Argonauts
Friday, November 5 at Hamilton Tiger-Cats
Friday, November 12 vs. Calgary Stampeders
Friday, November 19 vs. Edmonton Elks
B.C. Lions 2021 Season Prediction
The Lions win total at Sports Interaction is listed at 5.5 on the season and they are paying +900 to win the Grey Cup. The Leos should be good enough to go over that win total, but not much more.
2021 Projection: 6-8