Game Preview - Riders at Stamps

Published: Friday, Oct 19th 2018, 9:10am

By: Stephen Safinuk (@Safimod)

The Riders head into Calgary with their chances at 1st in the West on the line as they take on the 12-3 Calgary Stampeders. A single win or Rider loss in the remaining 5 combined games that the teams play would result in the Stampeders hosting the Western Final again.

Protect Zach Collaros    

With Dan Clark and Dariusz Bladek both gone long term, we will see Josiah St John and Philip Blake step in to take their place. After almost 3 years with the Riders, Josiah St John is about to get his first good long look on the offensive line, and it’s imperative that he be successful. The Riders can ill afford to see Zach Collaros on his back very often.

Get the Ball to Jordan Williams-Lambert

While Naaman Roosevelt is out for at least another week, Jordan Williams-Lambert steps back into the roster. The Riders need to key in on him early and often. He has shown glimpses of greatness all season long, and deserves more looks. As good as Shaq Evans was over the last few games of our winning streak, he reverted right back to the dropsies last week versus Winnipeg. With a ball control offense that is designed to march up the field, we can’t afford any drops.

SCORE POINTS ON OFFENSE      

You would think by week 19 of the CFL season, we wouldn’t need to highlight this one anymore, but here we are. As good as the Riders defense has been this season, we cannot continue to rely on them to be our offense too. The offense needs to put the ball in the end zone, it’s as simple as that.

Win the Turnover Battle             

The Riders defense needs to keep the ball out of Bo Levi Mitchell’s hands as much as possible and besides sustained scoring drives, winning the turnover battle is the easiest way to do that. We saw how quickly a couple turnovers can demoralize a team, and can’t afford to do that again.

Stay Healthy     

While it is important that the Riders win this game, it is even more important that the team stay healthy heading into the battle for 2nd with BC on October 27th. Last week’s loss was crushing both in the standings and on the roster, and we don’t need to see more of that as the playoffs inch closer.

Life Without Charleston Hughes

The Riders will have to go in to Calgary on Saturday evening without one of their best defensive weapons. The Riders just announced that they are removing Charleston Hughes from the active roster for tomorrow's game, and fining him the maximum amount allowable under the CBA. Given we are already without DT Mic'hael Brooks, this is not good news for the Riders biggest strength. Tobi Antigha and Chad Jeter will fill in this week, but the open-ended removal in the Riders' statement has me wondering if this is just for this week, or longer term.

Prediction

Riders 32 Stamps 20

Zach Collaros with 2 TD passes, Nick Marshall with 1 rushing TD, and the defense will have a TD as well.

 

 

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