C'mon man! Esks fold in Fourth Quarter.

You know how a baby can be happy for awhile, and then all of sudden things go downhill. Nothing works for them, they cry non-stop, and usually sleep is the only answer. Welcome to the Edmonton Eskimos. Three fantastic quarters had us thinking about an article titled “Esks Win, Esks Win”. A fourth quarter like what we witnessed had us pushing the delete button, uttering a few choice words, and starting all over.

Heading into the fourth quarter, the Eskimos had a 20-13 lead, had not turned the ball over, and forced Darian Durant to look more than a little frustrated. So what do they do? Fumble, fumble, penalty, sack. Just like that, the Eskimos are now 0-3 to start the season. Yes, there were some positives, but the team needs to more than that feisty underdog who stays close, but lets it go in the end. Saskatchewan played to win on Saturday afternoon, going for it on third down to pretty much seal the win, stripping the ball when they tackle, and going for broke on plays. like a reverse end around from their two yard line! The Eskimos simply don’t have that killer instinct. Now isn’t there a saying that goes something like “No Guts, No Glory”? Yeah, I’m sure I’ve heard that somewhere. Must have been Regina.

There were some positives…

How many times will we say that this year. Let’s get through them.

  • Fred Stamps took the offense on his shoulders and dragged the rest of his teammates kicking and screaming down the field. He had 12 receptions for 213 yards, 93 yards more than the rest of the Eskimos receivers combined. Yes, he did have that fumble, but that seemed to be more of a play where a guy was trying to do too much, than not enough.
  • Bravo Mr. Strasser. Bravo. Even though the plays didn’t amount to much, it was great to see a little razzle dazzle being thrown into the mix by the Eskimos offense. A run by Kelly Campbell, a pass attempt by Fred Stamps, and a few option plays with Jared Zabransky kept the Roughriders defense on their toes.
  • Jamaica Rector, and not Weldon Brown, was the man bringing balls back for the Eskimos and an 9.0 average says that Rector should have the job until he proves otherwise. His return for 25 yards in the second quarter set up the only Eskimos touchdown.
  • Maurice Lloyd was a force on defense in the first three quarters, racking up six tackles and two sacks.

Turnovers

Calvin McCarty took a short yardage hand-off and hit the line with one hand on the ball. A fumble was a forgone conclusion at that point. Hold on to ball young man, hold on! If the Eskimos had scored on that drive, the game would have probably been over, or at the very least, the Eskimos would have been in control. As for Fred Stamps, it’s kind of hard to blame him, but ball security has to be a priority at all times. The Esks now have a -10 when it comes to turnovers for and against.

Fourth Quarter Scoring

Through three games, the Eskimos have not scored in the fourth quarter and have allowed their opposition to put up 29 points. Not the way to win games.

Missed Opportunities

Noel Prefontaine had field goals of 16, 18, and 31 yards. The 31 yarder is understandable. Drives stall, and sometimes you have to take the three. The 16 and 18 yarders speak to a lack of finish in the red zone. Add the eight points lost to a potential seven on the McCarty and it’s pretty easy to see how the Eskimos completely let the Roughriders off the hook.

Now what!?!?!?!?

We’ll look at the stats a little later on. Right now it’s just a little tough to not feel extremely frustrated by another loss that should have a win. The Eskimos are going to have to start cleaning up these messy errors that cost them football games. If they don’t good teams will continue to take away the two points that the Esks keep leaving on the table.

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5 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by billyblaze27 on July 18, 2010 at 5:32 am

    Hey Gizzie, every week it’s the same old story. You keep saying untill they clean up all these mistakes and miscues they will keep losing. Well who is responsible for a team that is a comedy of endless mistakes week after week? ……….THE COACH IS !!!!! Untill Ritchie Hall is relieved of his post this will continue. Players love him, he’s a players coach. The problem is they don’t fear him. Kind of like Herm Edwards or Wade Philips in NFL. Two other guys who are horrible. The team should not be made to feel that their playing great for three quarters then folding, because they’re not. Kicking field goals instead of touchdowns early in these games continue to hurt the team. Changes need to be made to reverse what has become a losing culture in Edmonton.

    Reply

  2. @BB27

    Not sure that removing Hall as coach is the right move, although I do agree that it seems like the players are not accountable for making costly lapses in concentration. i thought that after last week, were Efrem Hill was released, that the players would sit up and take notice. The problem is that you can’t really sit down a Fred Stamps for fumbling the ball after he had more receiving yards than the rest of the team combined. Not sure where the Esks go from here, but something has to be done.

    Reply

  3. I’ve been reading and thinking about Saturday’s (and the other two) losses for a couple of days. There’s been a lot of desire to find blame. I’ve also wanted to come up or see the coaching staff come up with a drastic and immediate change to set things right. Yet, the team put up excellent stats – just for most of the game. They are doing things I want to see as a fan. It’s just a problem that Yoggi Berra pointed out – you win more games if you score more points than the opposing team. Esks fans want a team that responds well to adversity and has a fighting spirit. The only way to develop that is to work through adversity and fight back. 0-3 is an excellent opportunity for the team to do this. I can only be hopeful now that there is lots of learning going on and watch a 15-3 team in the playoffs.

    Reply

  4. @dcollins

    Well put. The two big issues with this team seem to be A) turnovers at the wrong time and B) an inability to finish in the red zone. Apart from that, fans who pay attention can’t help but see so many positives with this team. The Esks are certainly not the 2009 Toronto Argos and making the playoffs is a realistic goal. That being said, you need to win to make the playoffs.

    Reply

  5. Posted by billyblaze27 on July 19, 2010 at 3:24 pm

    I agree that you can’t do much about your two best receivers dropping balls and turning the ball over, and I also thought that Hill being released would shake things up but no such luck. Hopefully the staff can impose an urgency on the situation. If they don’t get them going this week I think some heads will roll.

    Reply

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