Jackson's return lone highlight on game tape

Edmonton Eskimos Head Coach Danny Maciocia trys to pull a smile after his team went down 39-14 to...

Edmonton Eskimos Head Coach Danny Maciocia trys to pull a smile after his team went down 39-14 to the Calgary Stampeders at McMahon Stadium in Calgary in a Pre Season game. (Stuart Dryden/Sun Media)

JASON HILLS, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 7:59 AM ET

Danny Maciocia spent the entire day yesterday going over the game tape from their 39-14 butt kicking they received by the Calgary Stampeders.

The only highlight piece he could truly be happy with was the Tristan Jackson, 92-yard kick-off return for a touchdown late in the fourth quarter.

"I kept on rewinding it and rewinding it. It was a real confidence builder," cracked Maciocia after a long meeting with the coaching staff yesterday after the Eskimos light work out.

"Clearly he's got another gear, and I don't know if he realizes how fast he is, but that whole run was unbelievable, it happened so quick."

KICK-OFF RETURN

Jackson's special teams kick-off return for a touchdown was the Eskimos first special teams TD of any kind since 2005. Veteran returner Keith Stokes who is trying to crack the Eskimos lineup after being released by Winnipeg in the off-season isn't too concerned about possibly being pushed down the depth chart after Jackson's return.

"I am self motivated, I don't need anyone else to do things to motivate me. He did a great job out there and he found the hole like he was supposed to do and he made things happen," Stokes said.

"I thought I did okay, I did some smart move when there were opportunities. I did what I did with the opportunities that I had."

"(Is this) nerve racking ... nah. If I was a rookie, I might be like oh what's going on, but been there done that. I just got to wait and see what happens."

Maciocia praised the work of his offensive line. He wasn't happy with a couple of easy dropped passes from the receiving corps.

After struggling in the special teams department the past two seasons, Maciocia liked what he saw from Tyler Clutts and Sammy Okpro and Pierre-Luc Yao. Yao made a touchdown saving tackle on one punt return.

For the third straight year, the Eskimos were stomped by the Stamps in exhibition action. But after leaving 15 starters back in Edmonton, Maciocia and the rest of the coaching staff wanted to use their exhibition opener as a game of evaluation. A game of "Let's see what we've got".

Posing an inexperienced defensive line, the Stamps ran rampant, torching the Eskimos for 280 yards on the ground.

"The fact that guys like (Dario) Romero, (Jim) Davis and (Fred) Perry weren't there. We definitely felt the effects of that, but we needed to find out what these other guys can do," said Maciocia.

"You don't like to go down there and have a team rush for 280 yards against you. You don't get any pleasure in having that happen."

The Esks still have 70 players in camp and Maciocia didn't hand out any pink slips yesterday, but he plans to possibly make some cuts today or Monday. The final roster has to be down to 46 by June 21st at 1 p.m.

"There could be a bunch coming, but I want to be careful with the whole process of making sure we get a true evaluation of everybody here and make sure we have enough bodies to practice."

GUILLORY'S RETURN

Defensive end Brandon Guillory made his return to the lineup after suffering a career threatening spinal chord contusion in an exhibition contest last year against the Stampeders.

He didn't take long to make a contribution as he earned a sack in the first quarter.

"I liked what he brought," added Maciocia.

"He had a big smile on his face prior to kick-off."

Slotback Clarence Moore took a helmet in the sternum against the Stampeders and was taken to hospital for x-rays.

"I am sore ... real sore," said Moore.

"It's mainly just bruising in my sternum. Nothing broken, it's just shaken up inside. I'll be okay in a few days."


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