Trismo in a huge slump

JONATHAN HUNTINGTON, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 11:07 AM ET

Tristan Jackson is living through a nine-game slump.

The Edmonton Eskimos return specialist hasn't scored a touchdown since Week 4 in Toronto. Now the rookie is starting to believe he's missing some reads when returning the ball.

"The guys up front are doing a great job blocking. Every time we don't have a good return it is all my fault. I just have to find my hole and hit it," said Jackson.

Special teams coach Noel Thorpe doesn't believe his returner is actually missing reads on the field.

"I think he is hitting the hole. There are some holes there that are pretty big and I think he has got to accelerate through them and believe he is going to come out the other side," remarked Thorpe. "If he accelerates through those holes then he will do a good job."

Whatever the reason, Jackson's confidence seems to be slipping. He denies that is the case. Edmonton did come very close to returning the final kickoff in Winnipeg for a touchdown last Friday but Jackson was tackled near midfield.

"When we take a look at it, that is one that should have scored," said Edmonton head coach Danny Maciocia.

QUICK HIT: The Esks special teams coverage unit was burned by Jason Armstead for a return major last week.

Maciocia claims his club has only given up five returns over 20 yards this year.

Still, he wants to see improvement this week.

Rookie Chris Ciezki - who has been a top producing tackler on special teams this year - believes the right system is in place.

"We are getting downfield quick, we just have to make the tackles. Buckle down and make the play," said Ciezki.

FINISH LINES: Former CFL guru Cal Murphy attended Eskimos practice yesterday, scouting players for the Indianapolis Colts.


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