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Saturday, June 9, 2018

PRESEASON: STAMPEDERS 39 ROUGHRIDERS 12

Photo: Saskatchewan Roughriders
REGINA - Bo Levi Mitchell is ready for the CFL's regular season to kick off.

His Friday night counterparts, on the other hand, have some work to do before the season begins in a week's time.

Mitchell connected with Kamar Jorden on a 40-yard touchdown strike and helped the Calgary Stampeders roll over the Saskatchewan Roughriders 39-12 Friday night in the final exhibition game for both teams.

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"This is a good confidence builder for us ... we put up points,'' Mitchell said. "Honestly, everyone made plays tonight. It was impressive to see. Our O-line gave us time and allowed us to go over the top a little bit and our receivers made some big plays.''

Jorden squeezed behind the coverage for his major score. Rookie receiver Nick Truesdell hauled in a pair of touchdowns for the Stampderes, who were 1-1 in exhibition play. Tailback Terry Williams added an 86-yard touchdown on a punt return and Calgary led 23-3 at halftime.

"I'm just doing what I can to make this team,'' Williams said after he totalled 145 return yards on special teams.

Williams played five games last season and recorded 187 yards and one touchdown and 312 yards on kickoff returns. He also had five catches for 88 yards.

In his only start of 2017, Williams was named the CFL's player of the week in Week 15 after he rushed for 156 yards and three touchdowns against the Montreal Alouettes.

"He's so explosive,'' Mitchell said of the second-year running back. "When he touches the ball he's like a rocket. He just takes off with a quick burst. He's a little different than the guys we've had in years past and I think he's going to add something to this offence.''

The Riders were less optimistic after Friday's showing, and understandably so. Saskatchewan's quarterback duo of Zach Collaros and Brandon Bridge struggled to get on track. Collaros started the game and finished 6-for-16 for 41 yards before he left with an apparent injury.

The former Tiger-Cats star left the game in the third quarter after he was nailed on a pass attempt by a pair of Stampeders rushers.

Bridge also was ineffective. He completed 2-of-5 pass attempts for 21 yards.

The Riders scored just one touchdown - a 33-yard pass from third-string quarterback David Watford to Caleb Holley - in two exhibition games. The Riders lost both those games.

"I don't see anything positive come out of tonight,'' said Riders head coach Chris Jones, whose team was penalized 10 times for 139 yards.

Jones said he knows who his starting quarterback will be on Friday when the Riders open the regular season at home against the defending Grey Cup champion Toronto Argonauts. Though Jones won't reveal who will be under centre until Monday.

"Collaros looks a little bit rusty,'' Jones said. "The ball didn't come out of his hands the way I would liked, and he missed two deep throws.''

"I have the luxury of having a guy who helped us win 10 football games last year (Bridge), so if a guy is struggling then Brandon Bridge will play, or it'll be the opposite.

"Collaros has started a lot of games and has been a good football player for a long time. He has won too many football games to be rusty forever.''

Watford passed for 172 yards and completed 9-of-17 pass attempts. Jordan Williams-Lambert was his favourite target, catching three passes for 57 yards.

Nick Arbuckle, who relieved Mitchell in the second quarter, threw for 89 yards to lead all Calgary quarterback. He, Ricky Stanzi and Larry Brihm all threw touchdown passes. Boston Rowe had Calgary's fourth touchdown, a 28-yard reception in the fourth quarter.

Calgary will host the Hamilton Tiger-Cats on Saturday to open the regular season.

(Canadian Press)


24 comments:

Anonymous said...

Comments section, lol.

Anonymous said...

Jones hasn't played Bridge much as he has likely made a deal to trade him. Why wouldn't he play more? Strange

@mrt_man said...

WELL... THE WEATHER WAS GOOD. BAGG AND OWENS DIDN'T DROP A SINGLE BALL...

Anonymous said...

Great start in a disgraceful showing. Thank God it was NOT ON TV.

Anonymous said...

If Collaros could throw he ball with the zip on it like Watford, he would be more productive. Looked like he was uncomfortable with the new CFL ball type.

Anonymous said...

I wouldnt get too excited about what we saw. Jones gave a lot of guys a chance to play and give them every opportunity to make this team.

The A team will be out come next Friday and we should start to see what we have.

If it's as bad as tonight then I'd be concerned.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, that's the problem - the new CFL ball. I Feel much better now.

Rally Driver said...

That game was painful to watch. On Calgary's kick return touchdown there was a blatant block (#2) from the back that was missed. There were 2 or 3 offensive off-sides that were missed on both sides. Not that either impacted the outcome. I thought Watford played his way to undisputed 3rd string. I felt badly for Atlee Simon, who had a good run and a good catch on back to back plays and then have football's answer to Ted Baxter call him Simon Atlee both times. Played at Thom, played for the Rams and probably had 100 friends and family in the stands, in his hometown, and the P.A. announcer destroys his moment in the sun. Way to go champ.

Anonymous said...

Bridge is probably hoping he gets traded to a team that will use him.

Anonymous said...

If the Riders don’t get things turned around for their season opener. It could be ugly. Right now Winnipeg is without a QB. Yet they don’t seem to be in any worse shape then we are. If that is going to be the play of both of our QBs.
Preseason game one was very similar to preseason game two in that the Riders showed no improvement. In fact the first game was QBs # 3,4 & 5. Where as our # 1 and 2 looked every bit as shaky.
I understand it’s only preseason. In many of the years we either went to the Grey Cup or got to the final. We lost both preseason games. Yet there was improvement from the first to second game.
I’m sorry but it’s almost like the coaches have not done Avery good job this year so far. This team looks anything but prepared.

Jeremiah was a bullfrog

Anonymous said...

What a stinker!!!!
At least we got a good look at defensive players. They were on the field almost the whole game.
Very, very poor showing for our experienced team savior QB's
Bad penalties by our veterans and poor protection of our QB's
I was very optimistic about our team until we started playing against any opposition
I sure hope I am wrong BUT it sure looks like we have gone backwards.

Anonymous said...

Disappointing for fans but I don't put too much stock in preseason. I'll give it a few more weeks before I make any judgements.

Anonymous said...

If we win 39-12 does that put us in line for Grey Cup favourite? Probably not but it being our last game before it matters, it leaves tons of questions for this regime.As other people have already said, a person must wait a few weeks before trying to male sense of this season.

Anonymous said...

Any desire to change your Western rankings yet? Still confident SSK is #1?

Anonymous said...

If the riders won both though we all know they win the Grey Cup.

Anonymous said...

First 5 games vs the East. Should get off to a good start. If not, then worry.

Anonymous said...

Fortunately I didn’t hear or see this “game”. Perhaps the reason the QB’s are rusty is because the Defence stays on the field most of the time? Fans do tend to forget the pre-season is to try different players and different scenarios not necessarily to win. These games do not show up in the standings so why worry now?

Anonymous said...

Calgary showing they are the class of the league still. There starters looked ready and their depth players looked better than ours. It won't matter what QB we have back there if the O-line can't protect better than that. Hopefully when the season starts, this team shows up and plays some ball.

Anonymous said...

Anon "Didn't see the game". Time of possession was about the same for both teams in the Rider games. Except for Ottawa who scored 27 in one game, every winner in the pre-season scored 30 points or more. So rusty QB's must be a Rider thing. In Jones we trust. I'm still trying to figure out if there is some kind of plan here. No NI backup for Messam. Only 3 NI WR's left. Jones is going to have to pick up some National players off other teams' cuts - the results of 2 bad drafts. Grant & Owens aren't surprises. Holley will fill Grant's spot.

Anonymous said...

Watford should be the starter. I really think we made a mistake getting rid of Glenn and obtaining Collaros. That could be the worst move of the year..... I really hope I'm wrong, but I'll bet there are fans in Rider Nation wondering about the same thing.

Anonymous said...

Praying that the Stamps will cut Simon Atlee and instead keep Atlee Simon?

Anonymous said...

After watching that game last night, there is a whole lot of work to be done in the next 5 days. I know that it's pre-season but there has been nothing seen that fills me with any optimism right now. I had that before training camp but now that I have seen what we have, the optimism has been cooled off.

Anonymous said...

Without question Mr. Robert Bagg will be long remembered for his grit and leadership on the Riders, but at age 33, and with an above $100 grand salary cap hit, it is now the right time to look to the youth for the next Bagg, Fantuz, Getzlaf type Canadian star receiver. The recent Rider era of Dressler, Durant, Fantuz, Bagg, and Getzlaf was special and we can only hope that someday ...

Anonymous said...

Yet another laughable effort.......Business as usual.