Argos focus on what went wrong

ROB LONGLEY -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 9:54 AM ET

EDMONTON -- In the long wait for a red-eye flight home Saturday night, the Argos had enough time to celebrate their victory.

But by this morning, the CFL East leader won't look at what went right in a 28-25 win over the Edmonton Eskimos on Saturday. Instead, the club will focus on the mistakes as it zones in on a second Grey Cup win in three seasons.

"We're going to go back this week and we're not going to look at what we did well, we're going to look at what we did wrong," defensive lineman Eric England said.

"The past two weeks, we let (Edmonton) back in it. We've got to learn how to step on people's throats when we have (the lead)."

Statistically and visually, the Argos don't always wow an opponent. Victory was accomplished despite getting just 10 first downs to the Eskimos' 30.

With two games remaining, the Argos have two goals: Secure first in the East and hit the playoffs running.

"We played prettier football in 2005 than in 2004 but we won the Grey Cup in 2004," Argos coach Mike (Pinball) Clemons said. "We're playing scrappy football this year and it's not aesthetically pleasing. But the key is to win."

In winning eight of their past nine the Argos are 10-6 and alone in the division lead.

Though they let the Eskimos get close with late rallies in back-to-back wins, the veteran roster has stayed poised.

One of the keys Saturday was a savvy half-time adjustment to loosen up the offence. In the first half, Ricky Williams and John Avery were going nowhere.

But a couple of 50-yard plus plays to Arland Bruce and Tony Miles, who were lined up into soft coverage, and suddenly running room opened up.

With quarterback Damon Allen taking care of the ball -- the Argos didn't have a turnover Saturday -- and the defence making plays and scoring points, this team doesn't need the spectacular.

As for the rest of the season, there's just enough business to take care of to add to the urgency.

With Winnipeg's 29-22 win over Hamilton yesterday, the top three spots in the division are still up for grabs. But if the Argos can close out with home wins over Saskatchewan and Montreal, they'll host the East final.

"We want to get the bye to host the East final then off to the Grey Cup," defensive end Jonathan Brown said. "Right now it's too early to be patting ourselves on the back. But if we keep this up, we'll be all right."

Meanwhile, kicker Noel Prefontaine, who is nursing a pair of knee injuries, will be evaluated today when the team returns to practice.


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