Casey back at the plate

GERRY MODDEJONGE, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:23 AM ET

The mighty Casey got himself another at-bat, but he's one loss away from striking out.

In his return as B.C. Lions starting quarterback, Casey Printers is oh-for-two since joining the team late in the season and recently reclaiming the No. 1 spot.

Another loss this week to the Edmonton Eskimos, and the Lions' playoff hopes are out of their hands.

Printers is just 94 yards away from throwing for the 10,000th yard of his career and appears to be back on track after taking a run at the NFL in 2006 and spending the next two mediocre seasons with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.

Although he has been out of football for almost a year and may have been thrust back into his old starting job sooner than even he expected, Printers isn't one for excuses.

"It's a choice that you have to make. Do you choose to be rusty or do you choose to go out there and make the thing happen?" said Printers, who has thrown for more than 300 yards in each of the last two weeks.

"One of the things that I've learned in the course of playing in this league is it doesn't really matter who you're playing or the offensive scheme or whatever is going on around you, you've got to make the plays happen. Period.

"You're not judged in this league if your team does OK or if you stall on a few drives. You're judged on if you get the job done or not and unfortunately we haven't gotten the job done the last couple of weeks.

"We've performed admirably, but nobody cares.

"That, in my opinion, is what separates the great teams from the average teams, is do you get the job done when you have to get it done?"

Getting it done against the opposition tonight would earn the winning side the third and final playoff spot in the West Division, while the loser is left with only a crossover possibility.

"We have to jell quick, we don't have the luxury of having a preseason," said Printers, who is focused on the quality of practices he's had, not the limited quantity.

"It's the mentality that you take with the situation that you're in. The cliche is not 'practice makes perfect,' it's perfect practice makes perfect.

"So when you look at it from that perspective, I've tried to get into a perfect-practice mode and if you can do that then you'll be sharper.

"You've got to learn off the bat and that's just kind of how it rolls."

And Mighty Casey would like nothing better than to knock one out of the park tonight.

Lions head coach Wally Buono is glad to have Printers back in the cleanup spot.

"I think Casey's always had the uncanny knack of being able to get the ball downfield," Buono said.

"It's hard to describe why and why not, but that's the personality.

"The other thing, obviously, is that Casey's escapability is such that when he escapes his eyes are usually down field. That makes him a very tough situation.

"You describe him as a quarterback who has magic."

GERRY.MODDEJONGE@SUNMEDIA.CA


Videos

Photos