Rambo to the rescue?

CON GRIWKOWSKY -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 10:48 AM ET

Ken-Yon Rambo likely has never heard of Da Piggy, the Sun football porknosticator.

After his impressive opening-week performance, though, the Calgary Stampeders receiver seemed glad to oblige.

When Rambo was informed he was picked No. 2 in the Sun CFL football fantasy draft because the guy doing Piggy's picks liked the sound of Rambo's name, all the K-man could do was throw his head back and laugh.

There's no question Rambo brought home the bacon for the Stamps last week. He made eight catches for 136 yards.

That made him the CFL's leading receiver after Week 1.

What's buggin' Rambo is a couple of fumbles that tarnished his splendid seasonal debut.

"Yeah, I got two fumbles," said Rambo.

"In my eyes, that brought me from an A to a C. The fumbles are real key to me. I look at the whole overall game and in my estimation, the eight catches is one thing and the touchdown is good - but those two fumbles could have been big turnovers."

Calgary escaped with a 28-18 win and Rambo was breathing easier.

"The D stepped up for us and held it down," said Rambo. "I could breathe after that, thanks to them."

If nothing else, the fourth-year Stamp got a good jump on trying to put up his first 1,000-yard season.

He's been a somewhat colourful character. In the past, he's been right in the middle of the choreographed touchdown celebrations the Stamps have tried to tone down.

MESSAGE

Rookie head coach John Hufnagel's insistence on a more businesslike atmosphere and on-field discipline was meant more as a message to the players to improve on the team's 2007 record as the most penalized club in the CFL.

But, give or take a muscle-flex by Henry Burris after his first-week TD, the players themselves have chosen to all but abolish the choreography and concentrate on football.

"You've got to cut that down, man," said Rambo.

"Cut it down and cut it out. You've got to do what the coach says, what the coach wants. It's nothin'. Last year, we toned it down and this year we've tried to cut it out ... almost."

In a way, the Stamps are trying to adapt to the no-nonsense approach the big guy brings,

"He's a great coach," said Rambo. "He's been around all types of football from up here to down south and he gives us a lot of confidence.

KNOWS WHAT IT TAKES

"When he talks to us, you can feel he has that demeanour of 'get this job done.' He knows what it takes and he knows what's going on."

Calgary came out firing against B.C. last week with a CFL-leading 23-carry, 125-yard rushing performance by Joffrey Reynolds and 457 yards net offence against a defence that was considered one of the toughest in the league.

Antonio Hall and Edmonton-born Dmitri Tsoumpas are two of three rookie starters along the offensive line.

"The way they performed in the two preseason games and training camp, you can't help but be comfortable being behind those guys," said Burris, who was sacked just once by a Lions team that led the CFL with 61 sacks last season.

"I knew we definitely put the best guys out there. I knew early on, I could take off and make some things happen with my feet. They play very physical up front."

Burris has bulked up, putting on 15 pounds since last year.

"Whenever I get hit, I'm not going down as easily or flying five yards like I'd do in the past," said Burris, who appears to have shaken off the effects of last season's shoulder dislocation.

"Also, when I'm tucking the ball away, I feel like the ball is solidly in my arms. Last year a guy could outmuscle the ball away from me."

This year, the Stamps are bringin' on the business.


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