October 21, 2012
Eskimos QB Joseph takes high road
By GERRY MODDEJONGE, QMI Agency
EDMONTON - Knock, knock.
Or so the tired, old joke goes.
Over and over again.
But nothing was funny about the number of orange jerseys that Kerry Joseph got an up-close look at on Friday night, as the B.C. Lions defence turned the Eskimos quarterback into the punch-line on their way to eight sacks and a 39-19 win at BC Place Stadium.
“It was a tough one,” said Joseph, who was pressured in the pocket right from the first whistle and completed just six of 24 pass attempts for 146 yards, a touchdown and an interception.
“You’ve got to give credit to those guys. They played fast, they played aggressive and they just beat us to the punch.”
Edmonton’s lone lead came off an opening-series interception by middle linebacker J.C. Sherritt, who set his offence up at B.C.’s 12 yard-line.
But the Eskimos failed to earn a touchdown on their first possession — a feat that has eluded them all year — and instead settled for a field goal after going two-and-out on a pass knockdown and a sack.
“We had a feeling that they were going to bring pressure,” Joseph said, adding he has faced Lions defensive co-ordinator Rich Stubler plenty of times before.
“He’s always finding ways to put pressure on the quarterback.
“He’s done it in past years to me, and they did it successfully. They wanted it a little more than we wanted it (Friday) night.”
That’s because the win earned the Lions first place in the CFL’s West Division for the second year in a row.
“They don’t have one of the best defences in the league for no reason,” Joseph said.
It was a common theme heard throughout the Eskimos locker-room after the game.
“They’re the best defence for a reason,” said right guard Greg Wojt.
“The biggest thing was consistency. It seems like at times we picked stuff up, like blitzes, and other times we didn’t. We were a man short.
“It seemed like the pattern throughout the night.”
And one that had Edmonton’s offensive line on the defensive under a pressurized Lions attack.
“You try adjusting to what they were doing,adjusting our protections,” Wojt said. “It seems like we started getting in a groove in the third quarter, but then in the fourth, we didn’t pull through.It wasn’t a complete game by us.”
While they tied the score 19-19 to open the final 15-minute frame on their lone touchdown of the game, the Eskimos offence managed just a trio of field goals in the first half.
“We’ve got to score majors as an offence, we can’t expect to win especially away scoring field goals,” said slotback Cary Koch, the only Eskimo to find the end zone.
“We didn’t complete it when we got in the red zone. We’ve got to punch it in there.
“They’re the best defence in the league and we showed that they were (Friday) night.”