The Edmonton Eskimo offence is scoring Touchdowns 73% of the time they are in the red zone. For those of you that don’t know; that’s called consistency. To you Eskie Haters who just love to make wildly ignorant predictions of how Ricky Ray and the Eskimos offence won’t get it done in the red zone, and you know who you are, read this article and eat it. Enjoy.[url=http://www.edmontonsun.com/Sports/Eskimos/2007/07/28/4375176-sun.html]http://www.edmontonsun.com/Sports/Eskim ... 6-sun.html[/url]
Red zone heat
By JONATHAN HUNTINGTON, SUN MEDIA
REGINA – The red zone is no longer a dead zone for the Edmonton Eskimos.
While there are a few reasons for why the club is riding a two-game winning streak, a major key has been the incredible scoring production from inside the opponent’s 20-yard line.
So far during the regular season, Edmonton is scoring touchdowns 73% of the time when the offence is inside the red zone.
That’s quite a turnaround from last year when the club was scoring majors at just a 59% clip.
“What I appreciate the most is the fact that we have been able to distribute the ball down there quite a bit,” said Edmonton head coach Danny Maciocia.
"It is not like you are locked into (Jason) Tucker or locked into the tailback.
“We found a way to distribute the ball that is why we have had the success we have had.”
There are some other theories as to why the Esks are having so much success in the critical zone.
“When we get there - most of the times - it is because we have been able to develop some momentum,” said offensive co-ordinator Jacques Chapdelaine.
“If you have created some momentum you fuel off of it.”
To further emphasize his point, Chapdelaine looks at what happened against the Blue Bombers in Winnipeg earlier this season.
“In Winnipeg there was a blocked punt and we are in the red zone right away and we didn’t do much with it,” he recalled.
“We came out with no points at all.”
Quarterback Ricky Ray doesn’t believe he has more plays at his disposal in the red zone this season. But clearly he has better plays to choose from.
“I think with some of the stuff that we are doing we (are) able to take advantage of defences no matter what they are doing down there- whether it is man or zone or bringing pressure,” remarked Ray.
“It has just been easier as an offence to adjust to that.”
Maciocia also gives credit to his own defence for the offensive success.
“Offensively we are getting it done but defensively throughout the course of the week (in practice) we are getting such great looks it is helping the preparation (of the offence),” he said, referring to the defensive unit mimicking the opposition’s defence in drills.
If the Esks had this kind of red zone success - essentially scoring majors at a 75% clip - last year, Maciocia believes the club would have made the playoffs.
“Eight of the 11 games that we lost (last year) - we lost on the last drive or the last play of the game,” said Maciocia.