By Staff Writer – Jason Langvee
Ottawa REDBLACKS @ Hamilton Tiger-Cats
Friday October 17th – 7PM EST
Ottawa: 2-12, 1-game losing streak, 225 points for, 369 points against
Hamilton: 6-8, 1-game losing streak, 314 points for, 323 points against
Previous results: Week 5 Hamilton beat Ottawa 33-23.
The REDBLACKS have had a tumultuous inaugural season, to say the least. However, the trend in competitive play remains to be on the rise, as veteran QB; Henry Burris is connecting more and more with his young receiving corps. With the strength on their offensive line that was essentially drafted exclusively from the 2013 expansion draft, the REDBLACKS are a few short steps from being a real contender in the east. Against Hamilton, Ottawa defenders like Jovon Johnson and Jerrell Gavins will need to be extra-sharp as Hamilton’s offense has continued to improve (even in defeat). Early on, Rick Campbell used special teams to establish position, and even catch opponents off-guard. Look for some more trickery from the REDBLACKS.
Although the Tiger-Cats lost last week, the fault cannot be designated to any one specific facet of their game. In fact, without a Player-of-the-week performance from Ricky Ray late in the game, Hamilton had the match cleanly dealt with. Zach Collaros continues to impress averaging just shy of 300 passing yards per game. Most impressively though, is the Hamilton defence as of late. Last week Eric Norwood tallied another 3 sacks against the Argos. Expect big things from the Hamilton front-7 on defence with big games from: Simoni Lawrence, Justin Hickman, Ted Laurent, and of course Eric Norwood (to name just a few).
Ottawa is now playing to establish a precedent for their club’s identity. As stated last week, team’s need to learn how to win. It is a hard concept to grasp, but proficiency in the game alone does not guarantee a team’s success. The subtle changes in games, like penalties or home-field advantage, are what successful teams take advantage of. Believe me when I say Ottawa is not far off from being an eastern contender. Hamilton’s implications are much more concrete at this point of the season. With a loss last week to Toronto, the Tiger-Cats now find themselves in a 3-way tie atop the eastern division. With Montreal and Toronto playing one another on Saturday, Hamilton will need a victory to remain in-stride with whomever emerges victorious in Toronto.
Hamilton hands Ottawa their 13th loss, as the Tiger-Cats beat the REDBLACKS 35-14.
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