Feeling at home in Blue and Gold

KEN WIEBE, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:32 PM ET

Taylor Inglis was not about to provide any bulletin-board material before facing his former team.

But after the Winnipeg Blue Bombers dismantled the Edmonton Eskimos 47-21 on Saturday at Canad Inns Stadium, the long snapper was finally ready to share his feelings.

“I preferred to let the game talk for me,” said Inglis, when asked about why he bit his tongue earlier in the week. “I pick my words pretty well, but I didn’t want to give them anything.”

When talk turned to what it was actually like in the moments leading up to and eventually facing the Eskimos, who released him after training camp after five seasons, Inglis didn’t hold back.

“I was pretty fired up. It was almost a nervous anxiousness, a nervous anticipation, if you will. We had a good week of practice. I was feeling really positive going into the game,” said Inglis, an Edmonton product who played football with the Edmonton Wildcats before joining the Alberta Golden Bears of the CIS. “It was great. It’s different, right? Those are my hometown colours. It’s the team I grew up watching and cheering for and those are my friends on the other team, but you know what? Business is business. This is a great win for our organization, the Bombers, and it’s pro sports. That’s the way it goes.”

JOHNSON FINDS END ZONE: It was an up-and-down day for the Blue Bombers’ special teams units.

Alexis Serna had a 36-yard field goal attempt blocked and the Blue and Gold also missed a field goal block of their own.

However, returner Jovon Johnson did run back a punt 83 yards for a major.

“When everything falls into place, it makes my job easier. I just read blocks as they come and make plays when I get the opportunity,” said Johnson. “I wanted to make a play. Everyone was getting picks, and I felt I had to do something, and what better time in the game than that to make a play?”

GREAT CATCH ... BUT: Johnson was quick to praise fellow defensive back LaVar Glover for a big interception but wasn’t ready to let him off the hook for getting pushed out of bounds by Eskimos quarterback Ricky Ray.

“That was big. They had momentum at that point in the game, and he came up with that interception,” said Johnson. “Now, we’ve just got to help him on the return skills and he’ll be fine.”

Glover opted to focus on the play that he made rather than a return cut short.

“Ricky Ray is a quarterback who trusts in his arm. I made the right read and I made the play,” said Glover. “It was all right. It was a big play and it gave us some momentum.”

ADAPTING GAME: It was a huge game for the Blue Bomber defence on Saturday as the front seven spent plenty of time harassing Ray.

Were there a few more blitz packages called?

“We did do some pressure at times, but you’ve also got to play zone,” said LaPolice. “The one thing we try to be is a little bit of everything. If we’re going to be a total pressure team, teams will handle that. If we’re going to be a total zone team, teams will handle that. So you have to be able to do everything. If you look at Game 1, we had tremendous push. In Game 2 at times we did, but they ran the ball a lot more than this team (Edmonton) did. In Game 3, they got the ball out of their hands quickly.

“We probably pressured more this game than we did the third game, but also it’s hard to pressure sometimes when Kevin Glenn’s throwing quick the entire game. We have to adapt.”

With the Calgary Stampeders coming off a big 40-20 victory over the Saskatchewan Roughriders, there will be more adapting to be done.

The Blue Bombers face the Stamps on Saturday at McMahon Stadium at 8:30 p.m.

SAYING SO-LONG: Hamilton Tiger-Cats safety Sandy Beveridge announced his retirement on Monday, ending his eight-year career in the CFL to take a job with the City of Hamilton Fire Department.

Signed as an undrafted free agent in May of 2003, the UBC Thunderbirds product played 105 regular season games, finishing with 124 defensive tackles, 77 special teams tackles and five interceptions.

— With files from Kirk Penton

ken.wiebe@sunmedia.ca


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