Arkee gets physical

GERRY MODDEJONGE, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:53 AM ET

WINNIPEG - Officially, James Patrick recorded the tackle in the CFL stats book, but Arkee Whitlock was the one who delivered the hit.

On their opening drive last Saturday, the Eskimos running back made the Saskatchewan Roughriders defensive back pay the price to finish the play, lowering his shoulder into the defender.

For me, I felt like I delivered the blow because I could have easily just tried to make a move and go around, said the five-foot-10, 210-pound Whitlock. Sometimes when I get into open field, I like to try to be physical. Especially with defensive backs, you kind of want to play with those guys heads.

They kind of dont know what youre going to do. I like to be physical. There may be a few times where theyre expecting to be physical and Ill just finesses Ill make a move and go around him.

But its more than mind tricks and guessing games for Whitlock.

Its just me setting up, marking my territory knowing that when I come back through there they can expect more things from me, he said.

Im a small guy but Im pretty compact, I dont mind the contact and every now and then Ill get physical.

That attitude comes despite watching former Eskimos running back Jesse Lumsden lose the entire 2009 season, and eventually his job with the Eskimos, after taking a more physical approach to rushing the ball.

I dont really think like that, Whitlock said.

If I deliver the blow, then Im not too worried about receiving one. I rely on my feet a lot, my feet keep me out of trouble and guys dont often get too many hits on me.


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