CFL Preview - Edmonton (3-14) at Saskatchewan (11-6)
From The Sports Network
By Gregg Xenakes, CFL Editor
DATE & TIME: Saturday, November 2, 5 p.m. (et).
GAME NOTES: In their final game of the 2013 season, the Edmonton Eskimos try
to finish on a high note as they contend with the Saskatchewan Roughriders at
Mosaic Stadium on Saturday.
Edmonton has been simply dreadful this season, winning a total of three games
in 17 opportunities. Making it even worse is the fact that two of those
victories came against Winnipeg, the other team in the league that is a mere
3-14 this year.
Edmonton had the Lions clutching at straws through the first quarter of action
last week, but then the Eskimos got a full dose of BC backup quarterback Buck
Pierce and the visitors ended up on the wrong side of a 43-29 final. The Esks
held the Lions to just a single point until the second frame, and after that
Edmonton surrendered 14 points in each remaining period.
Quarterback Mike Reilly tried to hold it together for Edmonton, converting 20-
of-34 passes for 321 yards and two touchdowns, but at the same time he tossed
a couple of interceptions and was sacked four times. Backup quarterback
Jonathan Crompton stepped in and connected on four of his six pass attempts
for another 67 yards and also scored once on the ground in the fourth quarter,
but by then it was too little, too late.
Adarius Bowman did all he could to support the cause by turning his six
receptions into 199 yards and two majors, but turnovers and penalties were
simply too much to overcome.
The loss for Edmonton was the team's fifth straight after capturing back-to-
back wins over the Blue Bombers in September.
While the Eskimos will be heading off into the sunset once the weekend draws
to a close, the story is quite different for the Roughriders who already know
that, regardless of the outcome on Saturday, they'll be matching up against
British Columbia in the playoffs on Nov. 10.
Last week, Saskatchewan scored just three points in both the first and third
quarters, making it that much more difficult to keep up with Calgary on the
road in a meeting that eventually went in favor of the Stampeders, 29-25.
In spite of falling by just four points, the Riders were dreadful on offense
as they generated a mere 256 yards on 71 snaps, compared to 426 yards for the
hosts. Quarterback Darian Durant went the distance for Saskatchewan,
converting 17-of-31 passes for 202 yards and a score, but not only was he
intercepted once, he was also sacked seven times as the team lost a chance to
possibly grab first place in the division standings as they had a three-game
win streak draw to a close.
Durant, who had a one-yard TD run in the second quarter to give the visitors a
15-10 advantage at the break, also tossed a 28-yard TD to Taj Smith in the
fourth frame to make things interesting.
Running back Kory Sheets, who engaged in a verbal feud with Calgary's Jon
Cornish throughout the week, carried the ball only 11 times and finished with
42 yards, a far cry from the 109 yards and a score put up by his counterpart
in what was being billed as the showdown of the week in the CFL.
Kicker Chris Milo helped to keep things interesting for the Riders as he
knocked through all four of his field goal chances and finished with 13 points
overall in the setback.
Saskatchewan's Weston Dressler went over 1,000 yards receiving on the season,
the fifth time he's done that in his career, as he caught five balls for 48
yards. Unfortunately for the Riders, fellow receiver Chris Getzlaf finished
the game on the sidelines due to injury, but not before he caught three balls
for 49 yards, en route to his second career 1,000-yard campaign.
Defensively, Tearrius George was a terror for the Riders as he came up with
four tackles, one sack, a forced fumble and a couple of recoveries. Because of
efforts like that, Saskatchewan ranks first in the league in points allowed,
permitting a mere 21.6 ppg. It also doesn't hurt that the team is second in
scoring with 29.0 ppg.
With respect to the all-time series, one that takes into account regular-
season battles dating back to 1949, the Eskimos own a 113-85-2 edge over the
Riders. However, Saskatchewan won not only the most recent matchup a few weeks
back, 14-9, but has taken three in a row and five of the last six encounters
Edmonton should make things interesting this week, if for no other reason than
the Eskimos would like to cause some measure of discomfort for a team heading
to the playoffs before they head home and start planning for 2014.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Saskatchewan 27, Edmonton 23
10/30 10:51:21 ET
powered by www.sportsnetwork.com.