Eskimos' Fred Stamps took a beating
By GERRY MODDEJONGE, QMI Agency
|Carleen Herzog hugs her favourite player Fred Stamps during Edmonton Eskimos' annual Fan Day at Clarke Park on Saturday June 9. Perry Mah, Edmonton Sun
EDMONTON - It's not the first time Fred Stamps put life, limb and more on the line in the name of football.
Never mind the fact that his Edmonton Eskimos were behind 28-0 and a win was all but out of reach in the second quarter of Friday's loss to the Montreal Alouettes.
But that didn't stop the slotback from giving it his all on a pair of slant patterns where a quarterback hung him up to dry with a high toss.
"Fred is a little banged up, but nothing that we don't feel (he'll manage)," head coach Kavis Reed said after Saturday's rundown.
"But he is banged up so don't be surprised if he misses the first couple of days of practice.
"He took a couple of very vicious hits, which I applaud that young man's toughness and I will never question his toughness again."
The first came on a Steven Jyles pass that Stamps left the ground to retrieve and ended up catching the ball along with a shoulder from defensive halfback Dwight Anderson in the opening quarter.
It was followed up with an abrupt how's-it-going from linebacker and former teammate Rod Davis in the final frame with a similar throw from Kerry Joseph.
"I'm good," said Stamps, who finished with a team-high 73 yards on four catches. "It's a team effort, we've just got to get better.
"We've got the mentality of our head coach and we're never going to give up. We're going to keep fighting until the clock reaches 0:00."
Neither of Stamps's efforts got the Eskimos back into the game, nor did they provide a much-needed spark for a sputtering offence. What he did achieve, however, was sending that message to his teammates and the rest of league.
"Fred's a winner," Reed said. "Fred wants to win and he took some hits that I don't think any of us would be willing to take to make the catch and that's what I love about that young man.
"He's going to sacrifice his body for the sake of the team and he deserves the next couple of days off."
QUARTERBACK'S BACK: The Eskimos received some good news on the personnel front when it came to the foot injury from a sack that knocked quarterback Steven Jyles out of the last three minutes of Friday's game.
"I spoke to our medical staff and we expect him to be ready to go this week," Reed said, of Jyles's return to Toronto to face his former squad.