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Bombers Look To Rebound Against Struggling Elks – A Statement made One Way Or The Other!

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers will be looking to get back to their winning ways this week when the beleaguered Edmonton Elks come to IG Field!

After a total, and utter collapse dropping their game to the Ottawa Redblacks, the 4-2 Bombers look to get back to their winning ways before their first bye week. In a loss that can be called nothing short of an embarrassment the Bombers better not take the Elks lightly. Like I said heading into the Redblacks game, there are no free spaces on the CFL schedule!

Often a game heading into a bye week can presents itself as a trap game. A game where the favored team looks past their opponent and looks towards their week off. However, I do not expect that to be the case for the Bombers…especially after how they lost to the Redblacks. The Bombers had control of that game in the first half. While they struggled in the second half they still had control of the game until part way through the fourth quarter. At that point Crum had two consecutive series for touchdowns both followed by a two point conversion. The Redblacks would intimately win that game with another Crum touchdown in overtime!

Bombers Depth Chart

Bomber fans will note the return of their highly paid receiver Kenny Lawler as he returns to the Bombers after not yet playing this season due to immigration issues. To hear the coaches take on the return of Lawler you are going to want to watch the full video. And do not forget to hear from Lawler himself! Yet even the return of Lawler will not help the Bombers if they play the way they did last game.

Another thing I will be watching for is if McCrea can get it going on kick returns. In his last game he pretty much had nothing and even bobbled the return a couple of times. Should that continue in this game, and if Grant is not back soon (which I do not anticipate as he is on the 6 game injured list) then I see the Bombers going to someone else for kick returns. The Bombers have shown in past years that they do not mess around in this area as a turnover on kick returns is instant field position for the other team!

Elks Depth Chart

My only question will be what does Chris Jones do if Cornelius struggles? Does he go back to Doege, or is that one put to bed? One would have to think that the Elks will roll with Cornelius, yet at the same point in time Jones is so unpredictable.

Statement Game

This game will be a statement game one way or the other! Either the statement will be, “Bomber fans, what you have seen in was only a blip on the map!” Or, “Bomber fans, we have some serious issues to work out!”


I predict that the Elks and Cornelius look at what the Redblacks and Crum did running the ball and try to find some of the same success. Cornelius has proven that he has the ability to run the ball. So far this year Cornelius has run the ball 20 times for 122 yards – a 6.1 yard per run average. The only other quarterbacks ahead of him are Crum and Fajardo.

I also have to predict that Collaros plays a far better game than Cornelius. When you look at yards, as well as touchdowns, and interceptions, Collaros is heads and tails above Cornelius.

When I look at the receiving yards and only see one Elk player in the top 10, I have to predict that Winnipeg wins that category as well. You have to go down to the 17th spot to find another Elk receiver on the list! I would also predict that neither Schoen nor McCrea are going to drop another long ball. Both should have caught their passes and walked into the end zone last game. That actually makes it two games in a row that Schoen has dropped very nice passes.

I do however predict that the Elks are going to be able to get some pressure on Zach Collaros. The Elks do have two defensive players in the top 10 – Morgan and Konar. Some of that is due to the fact that the Elks defense is on the field a lot. Another part of it is because Morgan and Konar are good players. The Bombers better be ready to block up front a lot better than we have seen so far this season.

I am going to have to come out again and predict a Bombers win – it is really hard to bet against this team even though they do not look quite as dominant as they have in the past! However, I am not convinced that this will be a blow out, nor that it has to be a blow out for Winnipeg to make a positive statement.

In Week 1 the Elks lost 13-17 vs. Saskatchewan. Week 2 did see the Elks being blown out by BC by a score of 22-0. In week 3 the Elks suffered another loss at home to Toronto by a score of 31-43. Week 4 saw the Elks put up another dismal performance suffering a 7-26 loss against the Redblacks. In Week 5 the Elks lost a game against Saskatchewan in a score of 11-12 (a game neither team seemed to want to win)! And in Week 6 the Elks hung around with Hamilton before losing by a score of 29-37.

The Elks were in it vs. Saskatchewan & Toronto, then lost to the worst team in the East the Redblacks (who beat Winnipeg last week), lost another close one to Saskatchewan, and then lost another close one (8 point loss) to Hamilton. They have only been blown out twice. But what Winnipeg does need to do is control the pace of the game. If Winnipeg is in control of the game and dictates what the Elks can and can not do, as well as get their own running game together, then as long as the Bombers win by more than 7 points I would say they make a positive statement.

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Don Cruickshank Reporter
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