Talley plays for keeps

Receiver Landon Talley brings in a Drew Tate pass in coverage. (QMI Agency)

Receiver Landon Talley brings in a Drew Tate pass in coverage. (QMI Agency)

Ian Busby, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:10 AM ET

CALGARY - Landan Talley dove, stretched out his arms and hauled in the Drew Tate pass just inside the goal-line.

 

Touchdown, right?

The third-year Calgary Stampeders receiver got up to celebrate the first passing major of Sunday’s intrasquad game, but it ended there.

The official waved it off.

Almost coming to a point of making a mockery of the mock game, Talley and a few teammates from the offence proceeded to argue with the officials, of course to no avail.

The Stamps offence might not have been clicking like mid-season form, but the intensity was at least there.

“You have to make yourself clear,” said Talley, who got his TD on the very next play. “You don’t want to do too much to the point where you will get a penalty.

“You have to make your point. If he says it’s not a catch, we have to live with it. At least we have replay.”

Had this been an actual game, Stampeders head coach John Hufnagel would have thrown the challenge flag.

If he didn’t, Tate would have argued his case vehemently.

On a day when passes were hard to complete due to harsh, gusting winds, you need to fight for every point, even if it was just a scrimmage.

“I knew it was a catch,” Tate said. “The ref said the ball moved. Yes, it moved, but it never hit the ground. When you get to see the replay, you will know.

“When we’re in (the red zone), we’re trying to score no matter who it was against. It was a situation where we had a couple of plays to get in.

“It was two plays in a row where Landan made a heck of a catch.”

After a week of training camp, Sunday’s scrimmage was the first time rookies got a chance to work with game-like conditions, such as yardsticks and officials.

Hufnagel scripted the situations to test his team, putting them in the hurry-up offence, in the shadows of their own goal-posts and on the goal-line.

The head coach couldn’t pick the weather, so it was hard to get a read on whether the passing game is in order.

Going with the wind the entire time, the offence didn’t complete passes longer than 20 yards, although a couple came close.

A toss by rookie quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell looked on the mark to Johnny Forzani for a touchdown, but it rang off the goal-post.

“If you see a punt going 90 yards, you know it’s hard to judge how hard to throw the football,” Hufnagel said.

“With Johnny’s, if he doesn’t hit the goal-post, he hits him in stride.

“It’s one of those things that we did have great opportunities to score touchdowns.

“There was one by Romby (Bryant) that was a tough catch but it was in his hands, and there was the one to

Forzani.”

The defence probably deserves some credit for keeping the offence from connecting more often.

Defensive backs Eric Fraser and Quincy Butler teamed up to knock the ball out of Arjei Franklin’s hands, while a couple of other deep balls had great coverage as well.

The QBs at least felt the day was productive as they fought the wind gusts.

“Playing in the West (Division), you will get these types of games,” QB Kevin Glenn said.

“You basically have to judge the wind, when you have it with you and when you are going against it.” 


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