Creehan defence to plug the gaps

IAN BUSBY -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 7:38 AM ET

Denny Creehan is sending all his defenders shopping this week.

Apparently, all those in red on the Calgary Stampeders practice field are supposed to hit The Gap.

If the Stamps do that, maybe they can pick up a win against the Saskatchewan Roughriders Saturday.

The only way to stop an opponent's running game is to plug holes created by offensive lineman for guys like Kenton Keith or Corey Holmes to run through.

The past two weeks, those gaps have been left wide open a couple of times, letting Charles Roberts and Josh Ranek break long runs.

Linebacker Brian Clark, one of the Stamps who admits he missed an assignment on a 60-yard Ranek run, knows facing the run-first 'Riders is tough .

"Those guys are better than anyone we've faced so far," said Clark. "We really have our work cut out for us this week.

"If we continue to play like we have the last couple of weeks, not stopping the run, we're in for a long night."

Creehan's defence took plenty of heat for the loss in Ottawa after allowing the Renegades to run for 245 yards of 563 total offence. But the defensive co-ordinator won't change anything in his schemes. He's just looking for everyone to know their assignments and complete each play.

During yesterday's practice, Creehan screamed at his unit a few times to shake them into game mode.

"I put a lot of pressure on them today," Creehan said. "I went a lot of no-huddle against them. I want them to communicate real fast. A couple of guys need to get ready to play faster."

EXTRA POINTS: OL Alexandre Gauthier returned to practice yesterday well ahead of schedule and should be ready to play Saturday. The left tackle has been out since Week 1 with a separated shoulder but has worked hard to rehab, which has impressed head coach Tom Higgins. "Our medical staff did a nice job but he also did a yeoman's job in terms of strength and what he needed to do," Higgins said. "By doing that, it allowed him to shorten his recovery time by a week or two" ... DB Ben Kelly also took first-team reps yesterday and should return to his cornerback spot this week ... Non-import DB Stephane Fortin was absent from practice yesterday but Higgins wouldn't comment on his whereabouts. The team is bringing in Canadian DB Dounia Whitehouse though, leading one to suspect Fortin won't be back.


Videos

Photos