It was being billed as a statement game for the Stampeders.
After sweeping away the Eskimos, the Stamps were seeing themselves being perceived as a good team, but one that had feasted on the also-rans of the season or on teams that had already done well against the lesser squads in the league.
Were they capable of putting together a statement win over a front running club, having lost to Hamilton and Winnipeg so far in their only meetings in 2019?
While I am not sure yet of the answer to this query, the Stampeders sure feel good about where their season is headed after a 19-18 victory to extend the streak of consecutive wins at McMahon over Hamilton to 15 games dating back to July 4, 2004.
Some thoughts on the game:
Bo stays perfect
Last week, Bo Levi Mitchell became the Stampeders’ franchise leader for wins by a starting quarterback when he surpassed Henry Burris winning his 72nd game as the starter. That record extends to 73 this week and the Ticats have been on the wrong side of the scoreboard for 12 of those wins.
Earlier this season the Ticats snapped a 14-game losing streak to Calgary with Nick Arbuckle at the helm. The Stampeders appear to be the Ticats kryponite, going 28-2 against the Hamilton squad since 1989.
For his part, Mitchell had 342 yards and a TD with no interceptions in the game. Despite Mitchell’s sparking win-loss record against the Tabbies, they have done the most damage from a touchdown to interception perspective. After Saturday’s game, he now has thrown 14 TDs against 11 picks or a 1.27 ratio against the Ticats.
Mitchell’s best record comes against his opponent next week, the Toronto Argonauts where he is also undefeated as a starter with 11 wins and a 25-3 TD to INT ratio.
Tre Roberson was a one man wrecking crew for Calgary. One interception and another play where Stamps head coach Dave Dickenson thought he should have had more.
“He got interfered with a couple of times. I thought he could have had another pick or two.” Dickenson said.
Adding that Roberson’s play isn’t just the result of being a phenomenal athlete.
“He’s my guy that does everything right. He shows up first, he does a lot of the extra film work, he works in the community, and then to go out and perform like he did, I’m just proud of him.”
Roberson’s biggest play of the day was saved for last however as he blocked a Hamilton field goal attempt in the last minute of the game to protect a one-point lead for the Stampeders.
— CFL on TSN (@CFLonTSN) September 14, 2019
A former quarterback, Roberson admitted he had never blocked a field goal before reminding us that he “just started playing corner three years ago.”
After the game, Mitchell said: “If you ranked him as the No. 1 cornerback in the league right now, you would still be underrating him.”
“Don’t forget us when you get to the league next year,” Derek Dennis called across the room referencing the NFL where Roberson might get an extended look next season.
Half time adjustments
The Stampeders were down 17-6 at the half and the lead was increased after surrendering a rouge on the opening kickoff of the second half.
The rest of the way the Stamps didn’t let Hamilton past the Calgary 35-yard line. Hamilton twice attempted field goals coming away with no points on either attempt with one offering sent wide left and the other blocked.
That followed two fumbles forced by the Calgary D that tightened up significantly after the half.
Pick your poison
The Stampeders two-headed monster of Reggie Begelton and Eric Rogers continues to cause teams fits.
They went off again Saturday for 106 and 129 yards respectively with Rogers getting into the end zone for his league-leading eighth touchdown of the year. Begelton sits second with seven. Both receivers are in the top 10 for yards as well with Begelton on top and Rogers in seventh.
— CFL on TSN (@CFLonTSN) September 14, 2019
In the game, Begelton went over 1,000 yards on the season, the first receiver in the league to do so. As a result, Begelton’s fantasy value has more than doubled this year and he has become one of the highest cost receivers available.
“Defences are keying on me, so that leaves Eric open…” Begelton told me when asking if I could justify the price of starting him.
“But at the same time, I’m going to be consistent. I’m going to be the guy who moves the chains, so if you want to bank on me, I’m going to get mine.”
Both Dwayne Norman and CFL tackle leader Cory Greenwood were injured in the game and were on the sidelines in “civvies” for the second half.
Dickenson couldn’t elaborate on the injuries after the game, but did note that the change of outfit isn’t typically a good sign.
The Stamps are thin at linebacker right now and Dickenson indicated that they have no one in house to add to the roster if Greenwood or Norman have to miss time.
Nate Holley, Riley Jones and Fraser Sopik were pressed into action and while they were a part of the defensive unit that held the Ticats scoreless through the second half, don’t be surprised to see a transaction or two ahead of the game against Toronto next week.
Simoni gonna Simoni
Simoni Lawrence has already been suspended once this season for a pair of games for possibly ending the career of Zach Collaros. For my money he should be suspended again for this…
Simoni Lawrence being Simoni Lawrence (i.e. dirty) and post play trying to do a Khalif Mitchell on the ankle of the RB. pic.twitter.com/QPfcOGeDWU
— (Jon)ny Foozball (@jonathanwhudson) September 15, 2019
Lawrence clearly has intent to injure here. There is no other explanation as to why Lawrence would need to grab onto Terry Williams’ ankle, hold it against his helmet and roll over it.
I get that sometimes the bottom of the pile is a dirty place, but behaviour like this from a repeat offender shouldn’t go unpunished.
Williams, for his part, had to be dragged away by a teammate from confronting Lawrence after the game.
Next up for the Stampeders is a Friday night clash with the Argos in Toronto as they look to build on a three-game win streak.