Thomas DeMarco, who made it clear upon joining the B.C. Lions he was an advocate of a team sticking with its starting quarterback and not switching to his backup in times of trouble, has found his perfect coach.
Despite truly dreadful numbers turned in by the quarterback in his fifth CFL start Saturday, coach Mike Benevides strongly suggested he’ll start DeMarco when the Lions play the Edmonton Eskimos on Friday.
Backup Buck Pierce might play, Benevides said, but there is no more thought of a change than there was when DeMarco was partly responsible for a league-high eight turnovers registered by the Lions in their 35-14 loss to the Saskatchewan Roughriders.
The thought process with the Lions is that for DeMarco to have any chance to become a bonafide starter, he’ll need to work himself out of trouble. He found plenty Saturday, and with the Lions locked into third place, it appears he’ll get more chances.
“You can’t put all the turnovers on him,” Benevides said. “Later on in the fourth quarter there were some throws he shouldn’t have made and he’s got to learn from that. He’s been through a tough haul. We’re going to have to make sure he can be as good as he can be.”
DeMarco threw two of his four interceptions in the second quarter, a big reason why Riders’ quarterback Darian Durant produced 21 points on just four-of-10 passing, and generated only six first downs in the final half.
However, even though the Lions defence held Saskatchewan to a pair of first downs and 39 yards passing in the second half, Benevides made no move toward Pierce, suggesting his veteran option still has only a partial grasp of the playbook.
So it’s DeMarco, and it’ll stay that way for the foreseeable future. Benevides said he anticipates Travis Lulay will continue only light throwing this week, and was unable to offer any projection as to when he might return from his shoulder subluxation.
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