Stamps exposed in loss

IAN BUSBY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:38 AM ET

TORONTO Close wins hide flaws, but losses in the same fashion expose them.

And the Calgary Stampeders will be limping home from a two-game road trip questioning if they are as good as they thought were a few days ago.

The Stamps let the Argonauts a rebuilt team with new faces in all the important places erase an 11-point lead in the second half and beat them 27-24.

Where should the questioning start?

The offence did score three touchdowns, but the long, clock-killing drives from the first two games were gone.

The running game dried up, as the reliable Joffrey Reynolds ran for just 44 yards on nine carries.

The passing game was erratic, and the receiving corps let their quarterback down by dropping several passes, including one that went for an interception.

When the ice-in-the-veins Reynolds is taking an unnecessary roughness penalty for stepping on his tackler, you know there is frustration building somewhere.

It was still early when the running back got up from a tackle by Argos linebacker Jason Pottinger and stepped on the No. 46 on his back as he walked away.

It was an uncharacteristic play from a classy player and it summed up the night for the Stamps.

Defensively, the Stamps did stop the Argos passing game, but they allowed 184 yards along the ground after stifling Cory Boyd and Hamiltons DeAndra Cobb in the first two wins.

Boyd ran for 142 yards on 20 carries Wednesday night, his second straight 100-yard game.

There were five turnovers created, but too many penalties taken by the men in Red and White.

At least they didnt allow another special-teams touchdown, but that hardly matters now.

Instead of a potential battle of 3-0 teams next weekend at McMahon Stadium between the Stamps and Saskatchewan Roughriders, Calgary will need to find out what it actually has against a solid crew from Regina.

This is an offence that knows the mistakes we made, said quarterback Henry Burris.

We will go back to the drawing board and get ready for Saskatchewan. We have to get on the same page as an offence.

We have a lot of new faces on our offence and we said that from the beginning. I cant perform that bad and expect us to win. We kept our defence on the field too long. We have to take this loss and learn from it.

Some will try saying the Stamps ran out of gas late in this loss to the Argos after playing Saturday in Hamilton.

But that win over the Ticats wasnt exactly pretty, either.

Even with a 1-1 road trip, there is nothing to make head coach John Hufnagel smile on the trip home Thursday morning.

After we won the first two games, we wanted to win the third one, Hufnagel said. We had a chance to do it and we lost it. We had the game in hand and Toronto took it away from us.

At least there are Stamps who were miffed about the loss.

Slotback Nik Lewis, one of three touchdown scorers, could hardly put into words what happened.

I guess you cant expect to go 20-0, Lewis said. Im really ticked off right now. You have to take it for what it is and move forward.

Receiver Arjei Franklin, who had a couple of fourth-quarter drops, summed up the missed opportunity.

Three and 0 was what we wanted and we didnt want to accept anything less than that, Franklin.

Were disappointed. Were not looking at any positives at this moment. When we get to practice next week, we will look at the good things we did.

Right now, its a bitter defeat.

ian.busby@sunmedia.ca


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