Defence prepares to stop speeding train

RANDY SPORTAK -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:31 AM ET

JoJuan Armour faced Jesse Lumsden while part of the B.C. Lions.

Armour spent a couple of seasons as Lumsden's Tiger-Cats teammate in Hamilton.

The Calgary Stampeders linebacker knows full well what Lumsden is capable of on the football field and why he's so good.

"He's an animal," Armour said succinctly. "He is one of the best backs I've ever seen. He has the body of a guy that will run through you, but he can still make you miss and run past you.

"With a combination of talent like that, any back will be dangerous."

Armour and the rest of the Stampeders will get their chance to face Lumsden and see if they can shut him down when they meet Thursday at McMahon Stadium.

It won't be easy.

Through the first three games of the season, the Tiger-Cats star running back has compiled 362 rushing yards -- on only 48 carries, an average of 7.5 yards per touch -- and four touchdowns.

To put those numbers into perspective, Stamps Joffrey Reynolds is off to another great season and sits second in the league with 277 yards. He's also carried the ball 48 times, which adds up to 5.8 yards per carry.

"He's getting better and better every year," said Stamps defensive back Richard Karikari, who was also a teammate of Lumsden's last year. "He's having a great start, and they just keep feeding him the ball."

Which is one reason the 6-ft.-2, 225-lb. Lumsden is so dangerous. As talented as he is, he's given plenty of carries.

Even if Lumsden is stopped a few times in a row, you know the Tiger-Cats playbook has more opportunities for him to carry the ball.

Basically, the Ticats dare you to stop him all game.

"From my position, I shouldn't be stopping him," Karikari said. "It should be the front seven doing most of the damage. My job is security --be there just in case the front seven can't make the tackle."

In three games against the Stamps, Lumsden's been kept in check. He's compiled 34 carries for 155 yards and one touchdown in those tilts.

SANKEY RELEASED

Quarterback Ben Sankey was released by the Stamps yesterday. The veteran pivot had a solid pre-season but was fourth on the depth chart and placed on the injured list through the first three weeks.


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