Injured Lions doesn't mean easy game

Calgary Stampeders Jon Cornish (C) gets crushed by B.C. Lions Khalif Mitchell (L) and teammate...

Calgary Stampeders Jon Cornish (C) gets crushed by B.C. Lions Khalif Mitchell (L) and teammate Korey Banks during the first half of their CFL football game in Calgary, Alberta, July 28, 2012. (Reuters/TODD KOROL)

IAN BUSBY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 5:34 PM ET

VANCOUVER - The last time the B.C. Lions swallowed up the Calgary Stampeders rushing attack, they had their beast in the middle.

 

On Saturday night at B.C. Place Stadium, the Lions won’t have the benefit of defensive tackle Khalif Mitchell, who is out with a thigh injury, pushing the line into the backfield.

The Stamps should be thankful, although the Lions still do have CFL leading sacker Keron Williams in action.

“Some of the stuff Khalif is capable of doing from the power and strength he possesses, it’s God given,” Williams said.

“Would we like that tool in the shed? Absolutely.

“He’s on the shelf right now. We have to work our way around it.

“The guys we have here are more than capable of doing what Rich Stubler has designed in the defence.

“If we keep our pad level low and go forward, we should have a chance.”

The Lions have the top defence in the league in 18 of the key 25 categories but last week, they couldn’t hold down the Saskatchewan Roughriders attack in a 27-21 loss.

They were riding a 7-1 run going into Regina, so now the Lions defence comes home with a sour taste in its mouth.

“Sometimes you can get lax when you are the driver’s seat,” Williams said.

“Sometimes you need a cup of coffee to stay even keel and wake up now and then.

“Having some humble pie and a dose of what we had last week is tweaking our gears so we can stay focused for this game.”

Even without facing the likes of Mitchell, Stampeders quarterback Kevin Glenn doesn’t feel there is a huge hole.

“It’s tough to exploit with a defensive line because you are talking about four guys,” Glenn said. “They have to play as a unit. It’s the same as an offensive lineman.

“It’s not like getting a receiver and DB where you can get a one-on-one matchup.

“A lot of times you scheme to have double teams on the defensive line.”

—Ian Busby 


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