Joseph shoulders load

Argos QB Kerry Joseph runs the ball against the Eskimos on Sunday. SUN MEDIA/John Hanley

Argos QB Kerry Joseph runs the ball against the Eskimos on Sunday. SUN MEDIA/John Hanley

FRANK ZICARELLI -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 8:39 AM ET

The CFL's reigning outstanding player had his most outstanding performance as an Argo.

Asked to shoulder more of the burden, Kerry Joseph used his arm, feet and football acumen to lead the Argos to a much-needed 35-31 win over the Edmonton Eskimos.

Suddenly, people aren't talking about the Argos' inability to produce points or Joseph's ability to lead.

With the win, the Argos moved to 2-2 and a tie for first in the East.

"I actually had fun today," Joseph said. "I said coming into this game I need to do that. I need to go out and just have fun. That was my whole mentality coming in."

Joseph saved his best for last. Trailing Edmonton by three points and scrimmaging from their one-yard line, Joseph engineered a drive for the ages, taking the Argos on an 11-play sequence that showcased all of Joseph's immense talents.

There was a calmness to Joseph in the huddle and an efficiency in the way he led the Argos downfield in a drive that rallied the beleaguered unit.

"Just amazing," veteran receiver Arland Bruce III said. "What Kerry did and what the entire offence did was amazing."

Bruce was the only veteran receiver available when Andre Talbot (groin) could not play.

Youth, on this day, was served in the shape of Tyler Scott, who hauled in five passes on that fateful march, and James Robinson.

Without the heroics of the rookie receivers and the veteran savvy shown by Joseph, the Argos would not have won and would have been answering more questions.

"I told Kerry to put us on his shoulders and carry us," rookie head coach Rich Stubler, who continues to learn on the job, said. "He called an exemplary game."

CALLING THE SHOTS

For the past two weeks, Joseph has been calling his own plays.

And perhaps for the first time, the Argos played as a unit.

On that game-winning drive, Joseph said backup Michael Bishop suggested Joseph attack Edmonton's perimeter in the wake of a brutal injury to rush end Fred Perry.

"We came together," Joseph, who returns to Saskatchewan next week, said. "It was a group effort."

On a personal level, yesterday marked a special day for Joseph, who was acquired by the Argos after he led he Roughriders to last year's Grey Cup championship.

Exactly eight years ago to the day, Joseph's father, Donald, passed away.

"It was a special day for me personally," Joseph said. "This was eight years that my dad passed away, so I figured you know what, he'd want me to go out and have fun. That's what I wanted to go out and do.

"It was a great win.

"I told my mom (yesterday) morning: 'I just want to go out and enjoy it and let it all hang out and see what happens.' When we put together a total effort as a team, this is what we can do and we can still get better."

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ARGOS REPLAY

INJURY BUG BITES

Argos LB Kevin Eiben (knee) couldn't finish the game. His availability for next week's road game against the unbeaten Roughriders in Regina may be clarified by as early as today after the veteran undergoes some diagnostic testing.

ACTION JACKSON

Rookie Eskimos returner Tristan Jackson victimized the Argos by returning a kickoff for a touchdown, his second return major in as many weeks.

ELITE COMPANY

Kerry Joseph became the first Argos QB since Doug Flutie to rush for more than 100 yards and surpass 300 passing yards in a single game. Rookie James Robinson came within six receiving yards of becoming the first Argo to total 200 yards in a game since Mookie Mitchell turned the trick 10 years ago.

PERRY IN PAIN

Edmonton's Fred Perry injured his left leg in one those moments that evoked painful images of Joe Theismann.


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