It may seem like a benefit for the Riders to have Ottawa quarterbacks Trevor Harris and Drew Tate unavailable for Friday’s game, but the head coach does not want them to take a win for granted.
“That’s the trap people look for,” said Chris Jones on Wednesday before the team flew to Ottawa. “Ryan Lindley is a good quarterback or he wouldn’t be there. (Redblacks head coach) Marcel (Desjardins) does a good job of putting personnel on the field and he’s one of them.”
Ottawa has seen both Harris and Tate go down in the last three weeks. Harris with a separated shoulder on Sept. 9 and Tate with a rib and shoulder injury on Sept. 17.
This week Tate is listed third on the depth chart behind Lindley and Danny Collins, as he was last week for the team’s loss to Winnipeg. Lindley is expected to make his second career start against the Riders Friday evening.
Defensive back Crezdon Butler said there are some challenges when the team faces a quarterback they haven’t seen in game action very often.
“I think (there’s) the sense of we don’t know, we don’t know how that quarterback’s going to play,” he explained.
But there are things they can prepare for like the Redblacks’ receivers.
“We just have to be ready. We know that (Greg Ellingson’s) going to be there, (Brad Sinopoli’s) going to be there so we have to be ready for those guys.”
Whereas linebacker Otha Foster stresses if the defence plays their game plan, the rest will fall into place.
“It’s more about us than them. We just got to go out there, play our game and try to make him make some mistakes.”
“Hope he throws me an interception,” Foster added with a laugh.
The Riders will be without one of their own offensive weapons as Naaman Roosevelt is still suffering from the effects of the hit he took against the Stampeders last Sunday.
Jones said he was feeling a bit better on Wednesday but ruled him out for the game against the Redblacks. Roosevelt has been moved to the six-game injured list.
In his place, rookie receiver Antwane Grant will start his second game of the season.
“I think he’s a lot better now then what he was (at his last start),” Jones said. “He’s in better shape, I think he understands the CFL game a little better so I look forward to seeing Grant.”
Kickoff for Friday’s game is at 5 p.m.
Catch the Green Zone 10-hour game day beginning at 1 p.m.