Brendan Gillanders takes a big hit when he loses his home football game.
A star player for the Cumberland Panthers and the University of Ottawa Geezies, Gillanders has played a lot of football in the nation’s capital. As such, he knows all about Ottawa football very well and understands what the Redblacks mean to their fan base. What has happened in the last three years for the Gilanders, who have gone through two Gray Cups, winning in 2016 and losing in 2018, since signing with the Redblacks as a free agent in 2016, has been very impressive. It’s frustrating. Bad; too many of these lows have happened in the last three seasons. Since 2019, Ottawa has a record of 9-35. But most disturbingly, the team is also performing poorly at home. The stats are staggering: he has 20 losses in the last 21 days at TD Place.
So why the troubles of the house? why all the losses?
“Honestly, I wish I had an answer,” said Gylanders. “I can say that our players are eager to play at home. You can trust me when I say it’s just as frustrating and we want to be able to win football games for them. Considering how you’ve stuck with us over the years, you deserve it.”
In 2017, the Redblacks got off to a terrifying 1-6-1 start to the season. His last three-game winning strong finish sent them into the playoffs. This season, the Redblacks are ahead of No. 1 Argos with his four wins, No. 2 Montreal with his two wins and No. 3 Hamilton with him one. A crossover team from the West (Saskatchewan is his fourth with six wins) could also advance into the East’s playoffs in his mix. How did the Redblacks suddenly turn a loss into something that drives them back into playoff contention?
“It’s up to us to get off to a good start and not have to dig ourselves out of a hole in the second half in these home games,” Gylanders said. We’re getting paid to win instead of getting a .We’re going downhill so closing isn’t enough anymore.Our fans want us to win, we wants to win, hopefully we can get it together.”
Somehow, there is still a glimmer of playoff hope. With six games left in the regular season, the Redblacks, who have a 3-9 record, probably need at least five wins. A home date with Toronto should start on Saturday. That’s a lot of pressure compressed in a short period of time. But that’s the position the Redblacks have put themselves in.
“It’s mentally tough. I’d be lying if I said otherwise,” said Gylanders. “Honestly, seasons like this are a lot tougher mentally than physically.As one of the senior players on the team, I have a little more responsibility and leadership role than when I was younger. We need to turn it into a win — that’s what we get paid for.”
Along with the Jeezies, the Gylanders were three-time OUA All-Stars. He played his first two CFL his seasons in Toronto before joining his hometown team. He has been used as a running back with the Redblacks — he has his 32 catches (240 yards) and his 60 carries (271 yards) — his most important role being Was on the special team (he has 42 tackles since joining Ottawa). Locker room leader.
“I’ve played my entire career in the East, but you’ll always know what happens at the end of the season,” said Gylanders. “I never want to panic, I never want to get too high. Eighteen games is a long season and it’s like a roller coaster ride. The reality of where we are, our destiny is us. The only way out of this situation is to win the game.Everything is in our own hands.Someone in the East to beat the team in the East. We can’t rely on, we can’t rely on anyone in the West, and what we want and where we want to achieve at the end of the season is still ahead, we need to finish the game and we have to win I won’t.”
Time is running out. The final six-game stretch saw Ottawa win his 23-13 victory in Toronto two weeks ago at TD Place against the team he lost 24-19. Ottawa then played for BC, finishing back-to-back games with both Montreal and Hamilton.
“Every game is important,” said Gillanders. “If you want to be in control of your destiny, you have to win these games, that’s all. We have to win and treat it the same way every week.This week our opponent is Toronto and we have to win.”
End-around: The Redblacks have added several players to their practice roster. Receiver Savon Scarver (Utah State) and defensive lineman Jake Flava (Grand Valley State) have joined the team… Ottawa OL Randy Richards (calf) is listed out for Saturday’s game. Argos DL Ja’Gared Davis (knee) practiced after two days off the field and is listed as suspect, but LB Henoc Muamba (abdomen) is in play. intend to do something.
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