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Vanstone: Cody Fajardo was great and resilient against BC

A week after being pulled out, Cody Fajardo threw for 321 yards and two touchdowns on Friday to lead the Roughriders to a 23-16 victory over BC

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Inevitably, there were glitches. The Roughriders of Saskatchewan demanded flea flicker in an indiscreet manner, which was rather like free flicker. Cody Fajardo, escape for your life!

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But Fajardo overcame the usual Matador pass protection and more to steer the Roughriders into a 23-16 CFL victory over the BC Lions in Vancouver on Friday night.

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A week earlier, the Roughriders’ starting quarterback had been pulled late in the first half against the visiting Lions, who were leading 21-3 at the time. Fajardo’s substitute Mason Fine led Saskatchewan to the only touchdown of the game, briefly clouding the quarterbacking picture.

In the disastrous aftermath of the 28-10 loss, head coach Craig Dickenson did not immediately commit to starting Fajardo in the rematch.

After the Roughriders slipped to 5-5 and suffered their fourth loss in five games, Dickenson said: “We still believe in Cody and we still believe in our team. We have to find a way to play better.”

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And they did.

Dickenson didn’t let the quarterbacking problem linger until the next week. He quickly confided to the media that his “confidence hasn’t been great so far,” backing Fajardo with some frowns on Monday.

These words were so widely disseminated and analyzed that this veteran graffiti artist concluded that a good chunk of his fanbase had lost faith in Fajardo.

There was also an assortment of “I told you so” comments from a fraternity of Fajardo’s critics.

But that all came to a halt, at least for the time being, after Fajardo helped Saskatchewan record a potentially season-changing win on a spectacular and resilient Friday night.

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Fajardo, who seems unable to throw deep, initiated touchdown passes of 85 yards (Kian Shaffer-Baker) and 26 yards (Tevin Jones), notching 19 completions on 24 attempts and tallying 321 yards. did.

While finding Shaffer Baker as a 49-yarder, Fajardo burned out the Lions with two of the four 40-plus-yard completions the Lions allowed all season.

With 11 completions this season with Nathan Rourke at centre-back, the Lions were clearly a different team without an injured pivot.

I could put an asterisk next to the result, which shows that Saskatchewan beat an opponent who had been the league’s premier player in the first half of the regular season, but not Fajardo and friends. still faced the same defenses and only one caused headaches. one week before.

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By some measure, the Lions’ defense was even tougher at BC Place. Did.

On one occasion, Saskatchewan attempted the aforementioned flea flicker. Fajardo handed off to Frankie Hickson, who returned the ball to the quarterback and immediately swarmed.

At Mosaic Stadium, Fajardo faced constant pressure and looked utterly helpless. A week later, Fajardo, who had been pursued around the stadium, was in command of the situation at several key moments.

For example, with 1:02 left in the 4th quarter, the Roughriders were in a 2nd and 7th place situation. At least in this chair, the assumption was that the Roughriders would once again hand off to Hickson, who rushed for his 129 yards, and punted the ball if necessary.

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Offensive coordinator Jason Maas had other ideas. He called for a play his action pass—an easy flip to Kiran Moore, which was uncovered, to gain his seven yards needed.

Fajardo then voluntarily lost yards and fell to his knees to use up the time remaining on the clock.

Yes, dear readers, Rough Rider has a winning formation. Imagine.

Victory Friday is a tonic, but not a panacea.

Tougher opponents await, like the 10-1 Winnipeg Blue Bombers, who face Saskatchewan three times in September.

So it couldn’t get any easier for Cody Fajardo. It will be quieter in the future.

rvanstone@postmedia.com

twitter.com/robvanstone

The world of sports is constantly changing with the times. Subscribe to Regina Leader-Post to supplement your steady diet of sports coverage. 306 Sportfix Newsletter. Each week, Sports His editor Rob Van Stone provides additional commentary on the Roughriders, Pats, and other teams and sports of interest, giving a peek behind the curtain. Click here to subscribe.

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Vanstone: Cody Fajardo was great and resilient against BC

Source link Vanstone: Cody Fajardo was great and resilient against BC

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