Forget me not

JONATHAN HUNTINGTON -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 11:02 AM ET

BURLINGTON -- A frustrated Brock Ralph is in a slump.

The Edmonton Eskimos receiver has not caught a ball in two straight games.

In those games, he estimates he has had just two balls thrown in his direction.

It's rather ironic he has hit this bump in the road as the team prepares to play in Hamilton on Friday (5 p.m. MT, CHED, TSN) because Ralph led the Tiger-Cats in receiving yards last year.

"No sense sugar-coating it: it is frustrating," said Ralph on his current situation.

"A big part of your job description is to catch the ball and make plays and I haven't - obviously - done that this year, much at all.

"It is a tough thing as a receiver. You can look at it a lot of different ways.

"I came to Edmonton (for) the number one priority to win and hopefully feel that again. I feel we have the guys in place to do that.

"As far as my personal situation: (I'll) try to be patient and do what I am asked."

Ralph had 721 receiving yards on 50 catches last year in Hamilton. And he only played in 14 games, missing four with a shoulder problem.

In four games with the Green and Gold this season, he has five receptions for 40 yards.

"I thought I would see more balls than I have up until now," continued Ralph, who came to the Esks in the off-season in a trade with the TiCats. "But it is a week-to-week thing.

"A lot of it is receiver's luck - being in the right place at the right time, the quarterback making the read.

"Probably the biggest thing is where I am lining up."

Unlike last year - when he lined up as a slotback in Hamilton's offence, which garners a lot of throws - Ralph is playing wide receiver with Edmonton.

"That wide field, it is not a place we go a lot," said Ralph.

"You have to be patient out there (at wide receiver on the wide side of the field). Lots of times once they finally get to you it is a big one - it is a meaningful play.

"It is a different approach (compared to last year).

"I am still trying to be positive with this whole thing.

"I know that we have a lot of playmakers on offence.

"Hopefully a lot of people would say that part of it is coincidental that I haven't had as many balls and hopefully would say more will come eventually.

"I guess I am in a receiver slump, right now."

Kelly Campbell is one of those playmakers that has emerged this season who has become a favourite target for quarterback Ricky Ray.

That fact combined with sophomore Fred Stamps becoming a lethal target, Jason Tucker's obvious skill and Kamau Peterson's impact in the receiving core is keeping Ralph's touches to a minimum.

Considering the two game shutout and the opponent this week, Ralph would surely like nothing more than a win and a personal breakout game in that order.


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