BALLANTINE: Calgary’s win is no surprise but we learned some things

It may have taken a while, but the Stampeders offence came to life late against the Hamilton Tiger-Cats Saturday night scoring, 19 of the team’s 28 points in the fourth quarter. The Stampeders winning at home against Hamilton is hardly news worthy anymore as it has happened for 14 straight seasons now, but there were a few things of note in the season opening victory.

  1. Bo’s shoulder looks just fine. After playing most of last season with an injured shoulder, Bo Levi Mitchell may have recovered a little too much in the offseason as he overthrew a few receivers in the first half that had managed to get behind the Ticats secondary. Mitchell managed to put up 297 passing yards but completed just 47 per cent of his passes. After the game, Mitchell spoke of continuing to build chemistry and smiled when asked about his weapons on offence. “It’s fun not ever having to think of your mismatches really, because they’re kind of all over the board” which leads us to…
  2. So many weapons, just one ball. Mitchell completed passes to seven different receivers against the Ticats. Three others had the ball thrown their way but didn’t come down with it. The biggest target of the night was Kamar Jorden who had four catches on eight targets including a sliding TD catch in the fourth quarter. Eric Rogers was less successful on the day as he caught just one of five throws headed his way, but it was a very impressive one at that. Over the middle to keep a drive alive, Rogers went over the top and snatched the ball away from the defender. The catch had the potential to be shown on a lot of highlight reels except…
  3. Juwan Brescacin goes OBJ. I could explain this catch to you but I’d never do it justice. I recommend you watch this at least once.
  4. The Stampeders defence gets it done – Last season the Stampeders defence allowed less than 17 points per game on average and did so again in this one giving up just 14 points to the Ticats. Coach Dave Dickenson wasn’t happy with the secondary in the first half and talked about making adjustments at halftime “They pushed the ball downfield on us, basically in the first half. We were loose as well, there were some big holes out there. Our secondary knows we have to be better.”
  5. Deja Vu all over again. In the second quarter Ticats returner Frankie Williams turned the corner after a Rob Maver punt and was off to the end zone. The play was called back due to a penalty that had Ticats fans looking back to a Grey Cup not too long ago when the same occurred.
  6. Tunde Adeleke can ball. Five total tackles, a forced and recovered fumble, and a quarterback sack. Not a bad lid-lifter for the Canadian safety slotted in to replace now defensive backs coach Joshua Bell. Adeleke is looking to be the steal of his draft class.
  7. Emanuel Davis fired up. Davis was all over the field making eight defensive tackles to sit even with Alex Singleton on that side of the ball, but it was clear he was excited to play his former team as he broke up a few passes as well. Davis took a pass interference penalty but quickly redeemed himself with a knockdown shortly thereafter. Davis was released by Hamilton in the offseason after just one year of a multi-year extension.
  8. The Fastest Cow is back. After rolling in on a motorbike, the Worlds Fastest Cow caught his opponent by the 55-yard line despite giving up a 10-yard head start. Following the loss last week, the cow needed this to get back on track.

Next up for the Stampeders is the Grey Cup rematch with the Argos in Toronto.

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