REDBLACKS set to battle against familiar faces in Edmonton
Coming off a 30-27 overtime win against their East Division rivals the Montreal Alouettes, that snapped a four-game losing skid, the REDBLACKS will once again be on the road for Week 9. This time heading out West to battle it out against the Eskimos at Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton. On the road for a second straight week, Rick Campbell’s squad will be looking take the reins on second place in the East Division, ahead of the Alouettes, as both teams are currently tied at three wins and six points in the standings.
This meeting will be the very first between the two sides this season, and the storylines truly do write themselves ahead of this one. Back in February, ex-REDBLACKS quarterback of three seasons Trevor Harris inked a two-year deal with the Eskimos as a free agent, joining other REDBLACKS teammates in Greg Ellingson and SirVincent Rogers, all three players making the switch from red and black to green and gold over the offseason. This storyline itself is enough to give both sides a chip on their shoulder and plenty of motivation to come out of this game with bragging rights, and more importantly, two points in the standings.
The REDBLACKS will require a big game from all three of their units. Offense, defense and special teams are all equally important to the game, and DeVonte Dedmon’s dynamic performance last week was a proof of that, as he played a huge part in his team’s win with his 382 total returning yards and two touchdowns. Expect the opponent to now have to keep a close eye on Dedmon now, starting this week against Edmonton. Dominique Davis’s return to the lineup from injury also gave a big boost to the REDBLACKS last week, as the starter had 164 passing yards and a touchdown pass in his team’s win.
Playing against some familiar faces is definitely one of, if not the biggest storyline in this game for the REDBLACKS. It is to wonder how much of an advantage Ottawa will have, knowing very well who is standing across from them at the quarterback position in Trevor Harris. The REDBLACKS defense will also have to be on the lookout for receiver Greg Ellingson, who was also a REDBLACK for four seasons. In six games with the Eskimos this year, he has caught for 457 yards and two touchdowns, while Harris has thrown 2304 yards and 10 touchdowns. SirVincent Rogers, however, will not be participating in this game, as the offensive lineman was injured long term at the start of training camp.
Keep an eye on Dedmon
The story of the game from last week’s matchup was receiver and kick returner DeVonte Dedmon, who had the second most returning yards in a single game in the history of the CFL with 382 returning yards, including a 111-yard kickoff return and a 95 yard punt return, both for touchdowns. Dedmon has already drawn comparisons from fellow William & Mary alma mater Pinball Clemons, and he will be a player to watch for the REDBLACKS in this game.
Canadian star safety Antoine Pruneau will be back in the lineup this week for the REDBLACKS in this game against Edmonton. Pruneau was injured in Week 5 against Montreal, and hasn’t been part of Ottawa’s lineup since. This means that a significant piece to the defense will be coming back, adding some firepower to that unit.
Scouting the opposition
From hot to cold
Having had a hot start to the season, going 3-1 in their first four games of the season and putting up 125 points on the board in those four games, the Eskimos’ spark that had them start the season off hot has died down a bit in the past few weeks, having lost two of their past three games, while only scoring 54 points. Edmonton lost their matchup from last week against Calgary by a score of 24-18, in a game where special units also played a pivotal role, as Calgary’s Terry Williams had a 103 yard kickoff return for a touchdown.
Trevor Harris has had himself a year thus far in his first as an Eskimo. The ex-REDBLACK leads the CFL in passing yards with 2304 yards on 199 completions, adding 10 touchdowns and only two interceptions to his stat line. Harris is currently on pace to have one of the most productive seasons he’s had in his CFL career.
The REDBLACKS offensive line will have their work cut out for them in this game, as they will face two of the top five sack leaders in the CFL in Mike Moore and Almondo Sewell. Moore is currently tied for second in the CFL with six sacks, including two two-sack performances this season, one against BC in Week 2 and one against Calgary in Week 8. Almondo is tied for third in sacks with four, and these two star linemen’s combined number of ten sacks is almost as much as all of the REDBLACKS’ defensive line’s combined number of twelve sacks, four coming from Avery Ellis.
Ottawa REDBLACKS @ Edmonton Eskimos| Week 9 – August 9th, 2019
Kickoff – 10:00 p.m. ET – 7:00 p.m. PT | Commonwealth Stadium
10 PM ET |TV : EN: TSN 1,3,4,5 | Radio: EN: TSN 1200 | FR: 104,7 FM Outaouais