EDMONTON – And then there was one.
Home game, that is.
The Edmonton Elks host the Saskatchewan Roughriders Friday at The Brick Field at Commonwealth Stadium (7:45 p.m. MT), as the Green and Gold take aim at their first home win of the shortened 2021 CFL season.
It’s been tough sledding in YEG for the Elks this season, who enter the night 0-6-0 in the 780 area code after a 39-23 setback to the Hamilton Tiger-Cats last week. The Elks are looking to avoid the first winless season at home in franchise history.
Opposite the Elks – who mathematically are still in the CFL West Division race should they win out and watch the dominoes fall perfectly across the rest of the West – are the already playoff-bound Riders.
Saskatchewan clinched a place in the Grey Cup chase last week with a 19-14 win over the Montreal Alouettes in la belle province.
CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE ELKS GAME NOTES
The Riders have their sights on trying to lockdown second in the West Division, behind the Winnipeg Blue Bombers who will host the West Division Final at balmy IG Field on December 5.
Changes are aplenty for Edmonton this week, as there are seven swaps from a week ago against the Ti-Cats.
Rookie quarterback Taylor Cornelius will have a very different receiving corps to throw to, as Edmonton’s leading receivers Greg Ellingson (687 yards) and Derel Walker (468 yards) are both sidelined with injuries. He’ll also be without starting running back James Wilder Jr. (more on that in Quick Hitters).
After this week’s home finale, the Elks get ready for the road trip to end all road trips with three games in a week: Nov. 13 against Saskatchewan in Regina, Nov. 16 vs. Toronto, and finally Nov. 19 against B.C. in Vancouver.
It’ll mark the first time in franchise history the Double E finish the regular season with three consecutive games, let alone a trio in a week.
A reminder that Friday night is Fan Appreciation Night, with plenty planned around the stadium all night long. For the complete list, which features $5.50 Molson domestic products (355ml), click here.
|GAME DAY INFORMATION (630 CHED SANTAS ANONYMOUS)|
|DATE | TIME||Friday, November 5 | 7:45 p.m. MT|
|LOCATION||The Brick Field at Commonwealth Stadium | Edmonton, AB|
|TV||TSN | Dustin Nielson (PBP), Glen Suitor (Colour), Ryan Rishaug (Sideline)|
CISN Country 103.9 | Morley Scott (PBP), Dave Campbell (Colour), Blake Dermott (Analyst)
The Countdown to Kickoff pre-game show starts at 6:45 p.m. MT
|50/50 TICKETS||Click here to purchase your James H. Brown & Associates 50/50 tickets.|
|DEPTH CHARTS||Edmonton (click here) | Saskatchewan (click here)|
Going to the game? Click here for everything you need to know with our Game Day Central page.
Fans are reminded that full vaccination, or a recent negative COVID test are required (12 and older) for entry.
|COACH||2021 TEAM RECORD||OVERALL RECORD (REG. SEASON)|
|EDMONTON||Jaime Elizondo (1st season)||2-8-0||2-8-0|
|SASKATCHEWAN||Craig Dickenson (2nd season)||7-4-0||20-9-0|
|QUARTERBACK||2021 STATS||REG. SEASON CAREER STATS|
|EDMONTON||Taylor Cornelius (1st season)||10 GP | 83-of-139 | 1062 YDS | 4 TD | 6 INT||10 GP | 83-of-139 | 1062 YDS | 4 TD | 6 INT|
|SASKATCHEWAN||Cody Fajardo (5th season)||11 GP | 234-of-339 | 2484 YDS | 10 TD | 9 INT||73 GP | 615-of-880 | 7200 YDS | 33 TD | 18 INT|
FLETCHER FEATURE BACK
There’s been lots of positive internal chatter around Walter Fletcher since the Ball State product showed his talent back in training camp.
Now, the CFL rookie will get his first shot to be the feature back for the Elks with the absence of James Wilder Jr. (ankle).
Fletcher has just 14 carries on the season for 44 yards, but expect those totals to spike significantly beginning this week against the Green and White.
Big pay day, anyone?
Someone will walk away Friday night with a big 50/50 win, as the total starting pot is over $106,000.
Thank the October 15th game against the Bombers for the big start, as that night’s winning ticket never materialized.
You can read more about how a big 50/50 led to the kindness that is Pay It Forward with Football, by clicking here.
Some big names are set to face their former teams (maybe) Friday.
On the Elks side of the equation, Derrick Moncrief takes on the Riders for the first time since returning from the NFL and signing with Edmonton.
Moncrief spent three seasons in Saskatchewan, including 2019 when he was a CFL all-star at linebacker.
For Saskatchewan, receiver Duke Williams will be a game time decision against his old colours as he deals with a hamstring injury.
Williams was a standout in 2017 and 2018 in Edmonton, recording 715 and 1,579-yard seasons respectively. An extended stint with the Buffalo Bills followed, before Williams signed with the Riders earlier this season and was re-united with offensive co-ordinator Jason Maas.
- The net offence edge goes to the Elks in this one, as Edmonton is averaging 343 per game (4th) while the Riders are averaging 314 (8th).
- Turnovers have been far more friendly to the Green and White this season, as Saskatchewan is 2nd in the CFL at +16. Edmonton is 8th at -17.
- There’s only one path to the playoffs for the Elks, and it hinges on seven results: four Edmonton wins, have BC win their next two, and have Calgary lose to Winnipeg. That would create a three-way logjam and send the Elks to the playoffs as the West’s third seed.
- Teams who win the field position battle are 41-9 this season across the CFL. Saskatchewan has started on the opponent side of midfield 28 times this season, while the Elks have enjoyed that luxury just four times.
|HOME||ROAD||COMBINED||LAST 10 (STREAK)|
|ELKS RECORD||74-33-2||48-58-0||122-91-2||5-5-0 (lost 3)|
|RECENT MEETINGS||27-24 L (Oct. 26, 2019)||23-13 L (Nov. 2, 2019)|