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CFL: Alouettes no longer flying above the rest

Written on January 31, 2013 at 16:26, by HTTN

Montreal’s glory days may be coming to an end

-by Timm Bruch

With five Alouettes front office members leaving in the past two weeks, the rest of the CFL is feeling a glimmer of hope. Could the reign of the mighty Bleu Blanc et Rouge finally be over?

It all began when Marc Trestman jumped ship. He’s the man who won two back-to-back Grey Cups, the CFL’s Coach of the Year Award, and four eastern division titles in 6 years. So when the Chicago Bears announced in January that Trestman would be behind their bench next NFL season, Als fans began to worry. And that was just the beginning.

Trestman is the kind of coach people want to work, a fact his Alouettes coaching staff seems intent to prove. Cue Pat Meyer, the Als’ offensive coordinator, taking the position as Chicago’s offensive line coach.

On Tuesday, Trestman announced Brendan Nugent (special teams assistant coach) and Carson Walch (receivers coach) would be hired as offensive quality control coaches. Both worked with Trestman throughout his tenure in Montreal, and both have been vocal about much they enjoy his system.

The Bears weren’t the only team picking through Montreal’s front office this week. The Ottawa insert name here held a presser on Wednesday to unveil Marcel Desjardins — formerly the Als’ Assistant General Manager — as the expansion team’s new GM. This’ll cause a world of trouble for Als GM Jim Popp, who has said before that Desjardins is a “lifeline” to him when it comes to tricky decisions regarding the club.

Now that Desjardins isn’t around anymore, signs are pointing to a headache-filled spring for Popp, who has to sort through the rubble of a disastrous two weeks.

With all this change, could the Alouettes’ reign atop of the East Division be coming to an end? With an older core (getting older with the three player signings last week), and a cornerstone who may be past his prime in Anthony Calvillo, 2013 will be a telling year.

Sure, the majority of players on this team have shown they can play. But who’s to say the best of them won’t be on a bus headed to Chicago this time next week?

It is the CFL after all. Anything can happen.