Almost missed this Thanksgiving game because it was so early….
If there’s one thing that the Calgary Stampeders have struggled with over the years it’s winning in Montreal. That may sound surprising because Montreal isn’t a very good football team. NOntheless, Bo Mitchell hasn’t won in Montreal in his career, somewhat incredible given his winning percentage. After locking up a playoff date last week at home in their win against Toronto, Calgary looked to continue their winning ways in their quest for a western playoff bye.
On the field there was trouble. Roadblocks is a better way to describe it. Roadblocks at the redzone. Both teams struggled to put up points, which played into the hands of the Alouettes. Calgary usually doesn’t have issues with points, but with a 0-6 score at the end of the first half, you had the sense it would be last man standing. The Stampeders tend to hold off and pull away in the 4th, which was the tale of this game as well. Both defences stood tall throughout the game, but ultimately Calgary’s experience won out. They needed another solid game because didn’t score points until the 4th quarter–not a point.
The incredible injury bug is likely taking its toll. Marken Michele left the game with a shoulder injury late in the fourth quarter. That would put essentially the entire import receiving corps on the shelf. That’s probably one of the reasons why the O is starting to struggle. If you can’t put up an air attack against the league’s worst team it’ll be rough when the competition stiffens. In a league where 2 wins in the playoffs can net you the championship, there’s simply no room for error or a lack of continuity this late in the season. Time is not on their side.
They have a few more weeks until the November playoffs to figure out what is essentially a new rhythm on offence. On D, the continued dominance is giving the team a chance to win every game. It has almost a broken record to see the squad come out in the second half of games and dominate. If they can continue to form, as they are start getting healthy bodies back, this might be the place where a Championship is won.