The streak is over. The Winnipeg Blue Bombers defeated the Eskimos 28-16 on Friday night.
The Esks were beat physically. That’s what happened. Ricky Ray was sacked 4 times and threw 3 interceptions because of pressure from the Bomber D-line. To put that into perspective, Ray had only thrown a single interception up to this point in the season.
The Bomber’s defence proved Ricky Ray was human. He was 17/28 and threw for a touchdown, as well as, as I mentioned, 3 INT’s. The pressure got to him and late in the game when big plays were needed for a comeback, the only thing available were dump passes.
Another reason Ray didn’t have the game he has had all year is that Fred Stamps didn’t have the game he’s had all year. He only had 3 catches for 41 yards. 27 of those yards came on one play near the end of the first half. The Ray-Stamps duo has been the main reason the Esks were undefeated up to this point and Jonathan Hefney did a great job shutting down Stamps. All my respect his way. On the bright side for the Esks, Jason Barnes filled in quite nicely.
Barnes had 8 catches for 125 yards and a touchdown, and if he could have squeezed the ball a few more times instead dropping some key passes, would have had an even better showing. Unfortunately, Barnes seemed to be the only bright spot as the game went on.
Now Esks fans, there’s no need to worry. You lost to a team who, right now is, the best team in the league. And in my opinion, Edmonton needed this loss. You need to learn how to lose before you can learn how to win. It also allows you to look at problems that you just ignore when you are winning.
Edmonton’s kick return is an example. Brian Bonner fumbled the ball twice and lost both of them and averaged a single yard per return. This needs to be fixed.
The Esks aren’t on their way down the standings, but they are vincible.
From a Swaggerville perspective, things looked good tonight. Buck Peirce was 20/27, had 242 passing yards, threw for 2 touch downs, ran for another, had 54 rushing yards, and an INT.
Fred Reid was also huge in this game running all over the Eskimos. He only had 96 yards, but the way he ran and the key plays he made, it made it seem like he ran for 500.
Next week, the Bombers will take on the Lions, while the Eskimos will face Anthony Calvillio and the Als. Both teams are now 5-1.