MONTREAL — When the Montreal Alouettes got together to watch game tape after their first loss of the CFL season, no one was spared.
“We inspected the film, diced it up — we were all very critical and you have to be,” all-star guard Scott Flory said Monday. “We do the same thing with wins, but there’s that attention to detail in losses.
“But we got it all out of our system and now we’re out here focused on Toronto.”
The Alouettes, who smoked the Eskimos 50-16 at home in the second week of the season, were handed a 30-19 loss in Edmonton last Thursday night — their first loss after starting the season with four convincing wins that had some of their more enthusiastic supporters musing about a perfect 18-0 season.
Now the Alouettes need to worry about avoiding a second straight loss when they face the 2-3 Toronto Argonauts on Friday night at Percival Molson Stadium.
Flory, the league’s outstanding lineman last season, denied that complacency had set in on the Alouettes, but admitted that something was missing.
“We didn’t execute,” he said. “If we do what we need to do and execute properly, we shouldn’t have any issues.
“We should come out with high energy and hit people and fly around and do our jobs. I don’t think we had that all time in all phases of the game. We need to bring that edge every game and we didn’t have that last week.”
What they didn’t have when they returned to the field for practice on Monday was receiver Kerry Watkins, who went home to New Orleans to attend to a personal matter, but who is expected back on Wednesday.
Slotback Ben Cahoon and defensive back Davis Sanchez were there, but didn’t take part in drills, although both are expected to play this week.
The Alouettes has reason to feel good about themselves after their first four games, which also had big wins on the road in Calgary and Saskatchewan and a 21-8 win at home over Hamilton.
Their offence was the league’s best, despite concern from quarterback Anthony Calvillo about leaving too many points on the field.
Their defence was dominating, and remains best in the league despite the loss in Edmonton.
But if they needed to be cut down a notch, the Eskimos did it. They rushed Calvillo hard and held the Alouettes to only one touchdown, on a rush by Avon Cobourne.
Calvillo got the 34 passing yards he needed to reach 60,000 in his 16-year career, but there were none of the TD strikes to Watkins, Jamel Richardson and other receivers that marked his previous games.
“I think our team has been very professional about how we handle things,” Calvillo said. “We had a great week of practice (before the game in Edmonton).
“I didn’t see where guys were taking things for granted. I don’t think the film showed that either. It just showed that we continue to make little, small mistakes that get us off the field.
“One case was, we were backed up to the two, we got to second-and-two and I missed a read, handed the ball to Avon and he got tackled. We had to give up two points. You can’t make those kind of mistakes.”