PREVIEW: Saskatchewan Roughriders vs B.C. Lions
The Roughriders and Lions are set to battle for first place in the CFL's West Division, granted it is only week three.
After Saturday afternoon's game there will be only one team left in the league with an undefeated record, with both the Riders and the Lions coming into the game with 2-0 marks.
With that in mind, there's been a lot of talk all week coming from both head coaches. B.C.'s Mike Benevides has been saying that the Riders will present a measuring stick of sorts for his team, even though they are the defending champions.
"For me, it's about the distances in points," said Benevides. "Right now, the point differential they're over 40 points in two games."
Benevides knows that the Riders defense will present quite the threat for his offense, specifically the pass rush.
"Richie (Hall) and his group has been able to do is find ways to get constant pressure, and push the pocket," said Benevides. "We're going to have to be very good up front."
Meanwhile, Riders head coach Corey Chamblin has been billing this game as "the big ticket," as he tries to hype up his team for a a big game. Which is the opposite of last week, when the message was all about staying humble in the face of a big victory.
"They're riding on a high right now," said Chamblin. "At the same time, I have to get our team ready to play at that same high."
Overall, most the players feel the week was very productive . Quarterback Darian Durant says the high intensity and the trash talking has been good, especially for the younger players.
"We have a long of young guys in that locker room, and they really know what they're up against when you play B.C." said Durant. "It's going to be a dog fight, they're going to be in your face, they're going to talk a little trash."
As for Durant's struggle against Lions defensive back Ryan Phillips, who has most of his career interceptions against Durant.
"Looking forward to it, can't wait," said Durant.
While the war of words has been strong all week, there's some interesting match up's on the field too. The Lions will easily present the toughest all around test the Riders have faced so far, being strong on both offense and defense. Specifically, the Riders secondary will have to find a way to stop a variety of weapons. One player who might play a big role is linebacker Tyron Brackenridge, who has been asked to shut down the best so far..
"It's a big test," said Brackenridge."You gotta come out and play fast."
With receivers like Geroy Simon and Arland Bruce III coming to town, Brackenridge is looking forward to the opportunity.
"That would put me on my high horse," said Brackenridge.
Kick off is at 1pm on TSN.