Tuesday Morning QB (CFL Week 19)

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The CFL season came down to the wire again but this time it was a little different as teams played for position not a playoff berth. Both conferences had found out their playoff teams a while ago but they were all still trying to find out who would be first. In the East the usually strong Montreal Alouettes had a challenge to their crown for the first time in years. The Winnipeg Blue Bombers were the worst team last year but turned it completely around this year. In a surprising season the Bombers rode their strong defence, known as Swaggerville, to the top of the Eastern Conference. With their series win against the Als the Bombers had the tiebreaker and they only needed two wins at the end of the season or to simply keep up with the Alouettes. The last week of the season saw Winnipeg take their chance to clinch as if they had won they would clinch the East but if they lost and Montreal won they would be forced into a semi-final game. The West was even more insane with all three teams making the playoffs eligible to clinch the conference crown. The B.C. Lions made their run late in the season with a late season push that some them lose one game from the Labour Day Weekend to the last week. Meanwhile Edmonton had fallen from their great start and Calgary had a disappointing season that saw former MOP Henry Burris lose his starting job. The west was a bit more complicated for this week as there were many different scenarios that could play out. The basic one was that B.C. wins and they earn the top spot no matter what else happened. Meanwhile if Edmonton won they would earn a home playoff game and hope for BC to lose in order to gain the top spot in the West. The Stamps would need to win and then hope that Edmonton losses to earn a home playoff game and hope that BC lost to get the top spot. With all of these possibilities in mind the last week of the regular season was an extremely important week.

 

Eskies squeak into Home Field

EDM 23 – 20 SSK

The Edmonton Eskimos have had a very up and down season as they marched into the playoffs mainly due to the lack of competition from the Riders and Argonauts. The Eskimos finished last year in last place but began this year the opposite as they came out fast to a 5-0 start. The Saskatchewan Roughriders did the opposite as they had a great season that saw them make the Grey Cup last year but this year have struggled to put together a significant winning streak. With both teams at the opposite ends of the Western Conference there was a lot to play for with both teams playing for something different. If the Eskimos won they would be able to play a home game in the playoffs and have a chance at the first place spot in the West that is if the B.C. Lions would lose. The Roughriders were playing for respect more than anything and to play spoilers in the race. The game started slowly with both defences imposing their wills in the first quarter but it would not last. Early in the second quarter the Riders got on the board with a TD pass from Ryan Dinwiddie (12/24, 193, 2 TD, 1 INT) to Chris Getzlaf (7 rec, 131 yds, 2 TD). The Eskimos wasted no time in answering the TD as almost a minute later Ricky Ray (22/32, 305 yds, 2 TD, 1 INT) threw a long TD pass to Adarius Bowman (10 rec, 226 yds, 2 TD). The Eskimos continued to role with that pairing as they marched down the field for another TD. At the half the score was 14-7 for the Eskimos who seemed to be winning the defensive battle for the game. The third quarter garnered only two field goals as the defences stood up again for both teams. The 4th quarter started with both defences continuing to dominate as the Eskimos managed another Field Goal to make the score 20-10. The Riders started a comeback behind the arm of Dinwiddie tying the game at 20 with three minutes left. With little time left Ray guided the Eskies downfield as they looked to win the game. With 46 seconds left the Eskies kicked a field goal to put them ahead 23-20. The Riders had the chance to get back with 30 seconds left as they started to return a kickoff. The kickoff was then fumbled giving the ball back to the Eskimos who kneeled down and won the game. The Riders season finished at that as they look towards life without Ken Miller and try to recover from a very disappointing season. The Eskimos took the win and earned a home field advantage in the playoffs as they waited for the result of the B.C. and Montreal Game.

 

Leos Manage Their Destiny

BC 43 – 1 MTL

The B.C. Lions have been the hottest team in the CFL as they played terrible to start the season and then went on to win 9 of their last 10 games. Their late season push vaulted them into the conversation for first place in the Western Conference and entering the last week their fate was in their own hands. If B.C. could win against the defending Grey Cup champions they would ensure the first place spot in the West. Meanwhile Montreal had been challenged all year by the Winnipeg Blue Bombers as they continued to fight for first place in the East. With the Bombers losing earlier in the day the Alouettes had their fate in their own hands as well as if they won they would overtake the Bombers for first place. With so much on the line both teams were looking to come out strong but it did not work out that way. The defending champs seemed lost on the field against the Lions. From the start the Lions offence overpowered the Als defence behind the arm of Travis Lulay (19/30, 280 yds, 4 TD, 1 INT). Lulay’s favorite target was Andrew Harris (5 rec, 74 yds, 3 TD) who came out of the backfield multiple times and scored with ease against the Alouette defence. Lulay continued to role until the fourth quarter when he left the game with what the Lions claimed was a Charlie Horse. Meanwhile the Alouettes could not get anything going all game as nothing went right in any aspect of their game. The Als seemed to get nothing even when they kicked as they had a field goal blocked. The Lions cruised to a 43-1 win as the Lions dominated the defending Champs who limped into the playoffs. With the win the Lions earned the first place spot in the Western Conference. This also meant that the Calgary Stampeders would take on the Edmonton Eskimos in Edmonton. The loss by Montreal meant that Montreal would take on Hamilton in Montreal for the semi-finals while the Winnipeg Blue Bombers would take their bye week and await the winner.

 

Other Scores:

TOR 33 – 16 HAM

CGY 30 – 24 WPG

 

POW Awards

Adarius Bowman, WR (Offensive POW)

10 rec

226 yds

22.6 avg

2 TD

 

Juwan Simpson, LB (Defensive POW)

10 tkl

0 sck

0 INT

0 FF

 

Paul McCallum, K (Special Teams POW)

5/5 FG

4/4 XP

19 pts

 

Andre Durie, WR/RB (Canadian POW)

8 rec

144 yds

2 TD

 

Final Standings:

Western Conference:

1. y-B.C. Lions (11-7)

2. x-Edmonton Eskimos (11-7)

3. x-Calgary Stampeders (11-7)

4. Saskatchewan Roughriders  (5-13)

 

Eastern Conference:

1. y-Winnipeg Blue Bombers (10-8)

2. x-Montreal Alouettes (10-8)

3. x-Hamilton Tiger Cats (8-10)

4. Toronto Argonauts (6-12)

 

Next Week (Semi-Finals):

Hamilton Tiger Cats vs. Montreal Alouettes (November 13th; 1:00 pm)

 

Calgary Stampeders vs. Edmonton Eskimos (November 13th; 4:30 pm)

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