Stuffing the Riders on several occasions at the goal line by the Eskies defense is a defining moment for this young group of players. The turnover on downs in the 3rd Qtr to keep the game 17-14 Esks was just outstanding. The Riders should have taken the lead or at least kicked a field goal to tie the game, but instead the Esks gave up a safety and kept the lead 17-16.
Then it happened again in the 4th Qtr with the Esks leading 23-19 the defense forced a turnover on downs. Mix in a fumble and that is 3 turnovers by the Esks defense.
The Esks defense kept another opponent to under 21 points and with Collaros and Carter both coming back to the Riders offense. In fact out of 15 possessions the Riders were only able to score 3 times on offense. The Esks average 1.4 points against per possession/drive by the opposition.
Could it be that the Esks defence is getting it done much to the shagrin of the naysayers? Yes, many a blow hards are being proved wrong by the Esks defense. Yet how do they do it?
Some will say luck, but this is naive. Good teams make their own luck and the Eskies have certainly done that to now be 5-2.
Some will see weak opponents, but that would mean the Grey Cup champs that just put up 42 points in a come back was poorly coached on offense by Mark Trestman. A coach that has won three Grey Cups and has won coach of the year. Is it more likely that Tretman forgot how to coach or that the Esks defense played well? The same can be said of the "Great" Chris Jones and his sidekick OC Stephen McAdoo. Good enough to win before and yet not good enough to win now against the Esks defense.
Could it be that an aggressive style of defense is risky and gives the offense a bigger opportunity to score points so a pick your spots defense like the Esks is actually more intelligent? Well there is a reason why many pro teams have selected a similar style of defense as the Esks. From the wide 9 to the big nickel, base dime and host of 3-4 defenses now being played down south, the CFL has moved more into a zone timing type of defenses that pick their spots on the field and in the game to attack.
The Eskimos defense is just doing this better than most right now.