Trick play a rare treat

DEREK VAN DIEST, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:13 AM ET

Ricky Ray to Jason Tucker? Perhaps.

Ricky Ray to Trevor Gaylor? Conceivable.

But Stefan LeFors to Rob Brown?

Deadly combination?

That's the combination the Edmonton Eskimos went with to spark their comeback Friday night against the Saskatchewan Roughriders?

"We've been working on a lot of things," said Eskimos head coach Danny Maciocia. "When Stefan is in there we ask him to do a lot of things. Last night we asked him to throw a ball and we asked him to kick a ball.

"We're just doing different things and it's to keep people on the their heels."

At the time the Eskimos were down 20-1. They were on an extended drive early in the third quarter. And they were five yards from the end zone.

That's when LeFors and Brown entered the game. Brown took a spot on the line of scrimmage and snuck out on a corner pattern in the end zone. The Esks backup quarterback found the Eskimos defensive lineman all alone for the touchdown pass.

From there they went on to pull out a 21-20 victory.

"The thing about Rob Brown, is that we've watched him catch the football around here for the last year just messing around," Maciocia said. "He's a tremendous athlete so I knew that if the ball is thrown his way and he was open, I knew he was going to catch it."

Needing a touchdown to desperately get back in the game, Maciocia knew things were going to turn his way when the six-foot-two, 279-pound defensive tackle was uncovered in the end zone.

From there it was just a matter of getting him the ball.

"When they're that open, that's when it gets even tougher," Maciocia said.

"You know you don't have to make a perfect throw you just have to put the ball out there. You're not used to seeing people that wide open. I'm just glad it worked out.

"When other teams see stuff like that they have to try and prepare for it. We're constantly trying to draw up new things."

It was one of a couple of trick plays the Eskimos used against the Roughriders.

The Esks went on to score another touchdown the more conventional way on their next series when Ray hit Tucker with an 11-yard pass.

"It was just a matter of them calling the play," LeFors said. "The line did a really good job of blocking up front and Rob did a good job of getting through there. There was a lot of mess and a lot of clutter that he had to get through. He finally got through and he got to the corner. He made a good play, that's how we drew it up and we executed it pretty well."

Catching the ball is not all that foreign for Brown, who used to be a tight end in college.

"Rob is a good athlete," LeFors said. "I knew he was going to make the catch. He can make the hard ones, the easy ones.

"I wasn't worried about that at all. I just treated him like a regular tight end and just threw it there."

When trick plays work they usually provide a spark for a team regardless of the situation.

And up to that point in the game the Eskimos had not done anything offensively and needed a spark.

"At that point and time we needed points, we needed a touchdown," LeFors said. "I think getting that was big. The whole drive itself was good.

'MARCH DOWN'

"We were able to march down the field and we were able to get that touchdown on the board. The defence then got after it in the second half and we were able to pick up that win.

"We were fired up after that. I don't know if it was because of that play or the whole drive in general."


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