For the second straight week, Johnny Manziel did not play, but the Hamilton Tiger-Cats picked up their first win of the season, beating Edmonton 38-21.
For the second straight week, Johnny Manziel did not take a snap. The former Heisman Trophy winner watched from the sideline as Jeremiah Masoli picked apart the Edmonton Eskimos with his arm and legs, leading Hamilton to a 38-21 win.
Masoli completed 19 of 29 passes for 332 yards, three touchdowns and ran for 59 yards on seven carries. As long as Masoli is healthy and playing as well as he is, Manziel is unlikely to see the field. Manziel watched Friday night as Masoli was on the field for almost 36 minutes. By decisively winning the possession battle, Hamilton was able to keep Edmonton quarterback and reign Most Outstanding Player Mike Reilly on the sidelines.
While head coach June Jones ruled out a special package for Manziel for the Alberta road trip, it might be the only way he sees the field anytime soon. When Masoli first arrived in Hamilton in 2013, he did not see the field until late in the season when then-coach Kent Austin designed a special package for Masoli. The package helped Hamilton win a key game against Montreal, keeping the Alouettes off-balance and unprepared to deal with Masoli’s skill set. A similar package would benefit both Hamilton and Manziel. It would give Manziel valuable playing time and allow him to display his unique skill set.
The Hamilton offensive line played excellent against Edmonton, surrendering only one sack and opened massive holes for running back Mercer Timmis. The Canadian running back had a breakout game running for 133 yards and two touchdowns. Receivers Brandon Banks and Luke Tasker both had big games on Friday night. Banks had six catches for 117 yards and a touchdown. Tasker, the son of Buffalo Bills legend Steve, caught five passes for 103 yards and two touchdowns.
On the defensive side of the ball, Hamilton played well, allowing only 340 yards and forcing two turnovers. However, the Ticats continue to give up big passing plays. Edmonton two passes over 50 yards, including an 88-yard touchdown. Defensive coordinator Jerry Glanville will look to fix the mistakes in the secondary ahead of the team’s home opener.
The Ticats host the Winnipeg Blue Bombers on Friday night at Tim Hortons Field at 7:00 p.m. ET. Winnipeg blew out Montreal and head coach Mike Sherman 56-10 in week 2. The game can be watched in Canada on TSN and on ESPN2 and ESPN+ in the United States.
The Tiger-Cats added another former NFL player this week signing Delvin Breaux. After two injury-plagued seasons, Breaux was let go by the New Orleans Saints. In free agency, Breaux reached agreements with the Denver Broncos and New England Patriots but failed his physical. Unable to secure another NFL job, Breaux decided to return to the CFL. Breaux played with Hamilton in the 2013 and 2014 seasons, helping the Ticats play in two Grey Cups and earning all-star honors. In his return to the CFL, Breaux made one tackle as the Eskimos avoided throwing in his direction.