September 16, 2017

Calgary attributes defensive dominance to recent success

Jeff McIntosh/The Canadian Press

Calgary’s defence stole the show on Saturday.

The Stampeders held the BC Lions’ offence to just 244 total yards in a 27-13 win.  That is an impressive feat against a receiving core that includes the likes of Bryan Burnham and Emmanuel Arceneaux, not to mention running back Jeremiah Johnson.

Lions’ quarterback Jonathon Jennings threw for only 167 yards with no touchdowns. He tossed three interceptions and was sacked four times.

» Stats: Lions, Stamps Box Score
» Images: BC at CGY
» View Updated CFL Standings

Stamps’ pivot Bo Levi Mitchell could not stop raving about his defence after the win.

“I can’t speak enough about them right now,” said Mitchell. “They’re flat out playing. I think that’s why I’ve progressed the way I have in my career so far because I get to go against the best defence every single day and a great ‘D’ coordinator…Sometimes I chuckle on the sidelines [because] I know what other quarterbacks are going through.”

The Stamps’ defence has given up an average of 14 points per game during their eight game win streak. They have dominated games and been the difference makers in close matches.

While Saturday’s victory saw contribution across the board from the Stamps’ defensive line, linebackers, and secondary, one player in particular stood out above the rest.

Alex Singleton became the first player to record double digit tackles in three consecutive games since the CFL began tracking tackles as a statistic. Singleton followed up his impressive 13 tackle performance in Week 11 with back-to-back games where he registered 11 takedowns. What is more impressive is that the 23-year-old from Thousand Oaks, California is only in his sophomore season.

Singleton has already surpassed his 65 tackles from last season. His 91 tackles in 2017 is currently the most in the league.

His efforts have not gone unnoticed by head coach Dave Dickenson.

“He’s playing well and he is a centre piece in that defence,” Dickenson said after the game. “You can see he is running around the field making big hits. He’s a real smart player as well. He’s taken a nice step forward and like I’ve said I think he’s up there with the best MIKE linebackers in the league and he’s only in his second year.”

As the saying goes; defence wins championships. If Calgary’s defence continues their dominance, there is no doubt that they will be dangerous when it matters most in November.