Well I have to admit its been awhile since I've had this kind of feeling about a game. You know the "I've got a bad feeling about this" feeling. Back a few years ago I had this feeling all the time but that was because we weren't that good of a team. But over the past couple years we have evolved into one of the better teams in the league and with that comes the belief that any game is winnable. It has been a rarity for me to be worried about a game.
This is one of those rare times.
Maybe its the fact that the Stamps are the top team in the CFL; that they've only lost 1 game; that their QB has thrown more TDs than anyone; that they have an elite RB, talented WRs and a great O-line; that they lead in pretty much every significant defensive category; that I've heard they sacrifice animals and drink their blood to gain strength for battle... there's plenty of reason to to worried.
But oddly enough, its these games that the Riders have historically stepped up big for. I mean sure our piss poor O-line is matched up against their furious front 7. And sure this isn't exactly the best match-up for our struggling offense. And sure our mistake prone QB may be victimized by the top team at creating INTs. And... wait... I'm not sure where I'm going with this one.
All pessimism aside I do think this is a winnable game and here's why...
- Burris has thrown as many INTs as Durant and our defense has been playing well so there will be turnovers. Patrick already has 2 INTs from Burris and this year and I expect that to increase.
- They key to stopping the Stamps is eliminate Reynolds and keep Burris in the pocket and other than last game our run defense has been doing very well.
- With the exception of Edmonton, the Stamps really haven't blow anybody out and we are as good or better than any team they have faced so far. they are no as invicible as their record suggests.
- Rob Maver sucks. Both on the football field... and likely off given the tendencies of some of the Stamp players (no that there's anything wrong with that).
- With Dorsey and Rodriguez out of the picture we now have competent kick returners and a receiver willing to fight for a ball. We have also sent a message that failure we no longer be tolerated.
Most importantly if you look our record this year you will see that we play like crap on the road (what? we do.) and play just good enough to win at home. We have yet to lose at Mosaic so hopefully the soldout stands will give the team the boost they need to break out of this rut and start playing like the elite team they should be. Another way for fans to help would be to run Doug Berry and Jim Daley over with a car on their way to the stadium. Not that I encourage vehicular assault... but let's just say if it were to happen I wouldn't be heart broken.
Clearly my mind says that the Stamps should win this game. But my heart is holding out the slightest hope that the Riders have another dramatic victory that almost sends me into cardiac arrest in them.
While I still feel that we have a chance to win and that the game will be way closer than most are predicting. I still say...
Stamps by 7