Double trouble

JONATHAN HUNTINGTON, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:32 AM ET

Wally Buono asked Danny Maciocia to give him some of the details of the Edmonton Eskimos game plan.

Clearly joking at the time, Buono didn't get what he wanted during the pre-game media conference for the head coaches yesterday.

But this much is certain when the Eskimos and Lions hit the field this afternoon for a critical game: Edmonton will have two import tailbacks on the roster.

Running backs Tyler Ebell and Damien Anderson are both expecting to get handoffs from rookie starting quarterback Stefan LeFors.

This marks the first time ever that Ebell and Anderson will likely get work in the backfield in the same game.

"Tyler is a good running back and we have to find a way to use him and keep him fresh and that is why Damien is on (the active roster)," said LeFors yesterday.

"I think (Anderson) has got some talent and we have seen him on practice field and he looks the part."

After being criticized for not running the ball enough in a 33-8 loss to Toronto last weekend - only handing the ball once to Ebell in the entire first quarter - this Eskimo roster shake-up is a sign the running game could be more of a factor today.

"I am happy the coaches have some confidence in me and my ability," said Anderson, who was a healthy scratch last weekend and hasn't carried the ball once this year.

"I think we will complement each other."

A former Arizona Cardinal - playing 35 games over four NFL seasons - Anderson brings more size to the table.

At 5-11 and 218 pounds, he's a big load to stop.

Rushing for 2,063 yards in 2000 as a junior at Northwestern, Anderson can not only be productive on the ground, but also provide critical pass protection for LeFors. At times last week that was dearly missing for the rookie QB.

In nearly a must-win situation - Edmonton is three points below the final playoff spot in the West and four points shy of the last post-season berth in the East entering last night - the Esks only have three regular-season games left after today's B.C. tilt.

Facing the No. 1 defensive front four in the league will not be an easy task for LeFors and his offensive crew.

The Lions are averaging more than three sacks a game to lead the CFL, but the Esks offensive line is trying to forget the resumes belonging to Cameron Wake, Brent Johnson and the rest of the pack.

"They are good. They are up in there in the sacks," said offensive tackle Joe McGrath.

"But they are just bodies. You got to treat them like bodies. Treat them like birds."

If Edmonton can establish a running game, the Leos' Fearsome Foursome will end up on their heels.


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