Deeee-fence!

JONATHAN HUNTINGTON -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 10:47 AM ET

SPECIAL TEAMS

A

The most improved area from last year.

Edmonton gave up six touchdowns against on special teams last year and failed to score a major on one return.

This year it's much different: one touchdown against and rookie Eskimo returner Tristan Jackson has scored two touchdowns.

Noel Prefontaine is also having an extremely good campaign. He had a 48.3 net punt average last Friday, which is outstanding.

On kickoffs, he's placing the ball away from the middle of the field. And he has a 78% success rate on field goals, 10% better than Sean Fleming last year.

COACH'S COMMENT:

"We have now gone two weeks without a penalty (on any special teams unit)," said assistant coach Noel Thorpe.

FRONT SEVEN

B

A brand new defensive line and a new starting middle linebacker is massive change - but Edmonton entered this past week giving up the second lowest offensive yards per game (349) in the league.

The run defence is also much better from last year. Joffrey Reynolds was held to 27 yards on 12 carries last Friday.

COACH'S COMMENT:

Areas to improve: "Consistency in run defence, game wide effort in pass rush and I am not real pleased with too many penalties," said D-line coach Don Wnek.

SECONDARY

B-

This unit gave up too many passing yards (323) last week to Henry Burris but it was dealing with another revolving door. Scott Coe became the fourth safety this year in that game.

There has been so much shuffling due to injuries that this secondary has not had the same alignment for more than two straight games this year.

Still, the Esks are giving up just 267 average yards passing per game.

COACH'S COMMENT:

"We have the lowest completion percentage (in the CFL)," said defensive backs coach Noel Thorpe.

COACHING

B

Thorpe was the most important special teams addition this year. Ronnie Vinklarek has moulded a new O-line into a solid group. Rick Worman and Maciocia have taken the chains off the offence, taking shots with the deep ball.


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