CALGARY - The Calgary Stampeders are ... going green?
With star slotback Ken-Yon Rambo slowed by a hamstring injury and sidelined for Friday’s meeting with the B.C. Lions, teammate Nik Lewis figures the Stamps should follow the lead of the arch-rival Saskatchewan Roughriders.
“That’s one thing that I’ve gotten from Saskatchewan is they’ve always plugged in people when guys are hurt — Weston Dressler goes down, they go still win,” Lewis said.
“If Ken-Yon is down, then we still have to go win. There’s no reason to go if we don’t think we can win.
“You can’t replace (Rambo). You just go out there and maintain. I’ve missed games before and we’ve won. He’s missed games before and we’ve won. So we just gotta maintain. If he’s not in the lineup, then we’ve gotta go out there and make plays, and whoever is in his spot will go make plays.”
That’d be Landan Talley, the sophomore speedster saddled with the chore of replacing Rambo in Calgary’s offensive scheme. Not that just one guy can fill the cleats of a former CFL receiving champ who racked up 1,172 yards through the air in just 14 outings last season, including 185 yards and three majors in two trips to Empire Field.
“Very big shoes,” Talley said. “That’s one of our big playmakers when it comes to receivers. They just feel real comfortable (with me), so I’ve gotta step up.”
Like it or not, injuries have been the big story at McMahon Stadium as the Stamps try to regroup from last week’s loss to the Toronto Argonauts.
Corey Mace’s season is in jeopardy after the broad-shouldered defensive tackle tore his Achilles tendon in season-opener.
Weak-side linebacker Malik Jackson (concussion) will also stay home this week. Same goes for kicker Rob Maver, who’ll need at least a month to recover from a torn quad.
With Rambo observing drills for the third consecutive day, there was some concern when Lewis made an early exit from Wednesday’s practice session, but the sure-handed slotback told reporters “I’m good” and Stamps head coach John Hufnagel confirmed he “just wanted to rest his legs a little bit.”
Rambo will get more rest than he wanted, giving Talley an opportunity to prove how much he’s learned in parts of two seasons as a professional.
The 24-year-old suited up for three regular-season tilts in 2010, catching a pair of passes for 18 yards and one touchdown.
“He’s a skilled receiver, and he’s got excellent speed,” said Hufnagel. “I thought Landan did an exceptional job last year when we called upon him, and I expect the same on Friday night.”
The fleet-footed Talley comes from a football family. His father, Micheal, was a collegiate standout and attended training camp with the NFL’s Kansas City Chiefs in 1975, while two of his brothers — Landan’s uncles — attracted attention from the Dallas Cowboys scouting staff.
Talley expects to hear from his father prior to Friday’s kickoff in B.C. (8:30 p.m., TSN, QR77), although he already knows what his biggest fan will have to say.
“Just play your game. That’s it — just play your game,” Talley said. “You do what you do.”
Regardless of who you’re replacing.