Eskimos humbled by Argo big plays

SCOTT ZERR -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 7:39 AM ET

EDMONTON -- Missed tackles and a communication breakdown.

Exactly what can't happen when a football team is trying to avoid giving up the big play. Yet that is exactly what happened to the Edmonton Eskimos last week against the Toronto Argonauts. And tomorrow night's opponent, the Montreal Alouettes, have the weapons in their arsenal to go big and go home with a victory.

"Normally those things never happen to us. You take those two plays away, we win that game and we're not even talking about those two plays," said Esks head coach Danny Maciocia.

But they did happen. The Argos accounted for just nine first downs in the entire game while earning 179 yards and scoring two touchdowns.

"Big plays win football games. We didn't make any and they did. They made one play the entire first half and put points on the board," said safety William Loftus.

"After one big play, you have to shake it off and line up again. Unfortunately we let them have a few big plays and it ended up costing us the game."

Rookie mistakes, figured linebacker Singor Mobley, yet they happened to a group that shouldn't be falling victim to such blunders.

LEARNED FROM THAT

"We can learn from that and this week in practice we changed some things in our philosophy," added Mobley.

Even without injured receiver Ben Cahoon, the Als can still burn their opposition with the home-run ball. Kerry Watkins has become a primary target for veteran QB Anthony Calvillo, racking up more than 100 yards against Calgary last week and with three touchdowns to his credit. O'Neil Wilson has credentials to be wary of, to say nothing of the loaded resume that ex-Esk Terry Vaughn brings to the field.

"We've got to mix it up on (Calvillo)," explained Maciocia. "You can't give him the same look too many times in a row because he's just too smart. Eventually he'll catch you doing the same thing and he'll have an answer. We'll have man-to-man and zone and just try to keep him on his heels."

After getting burned by the Argos, the last thing the Eskimos need is to get set ablaze less than a week later.


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