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June 28, 2018

Game Preview: OTT @ CGY

CALGARY, AB - JUNE 16, 2018: The Calgary Stampeders won 28-14 against the Hamilton Tiger-Cats at McMahon Stadium on Saturday's Home Opener. (Photo by Rob McMorris/Calgary Stampeders)

It’s a quick turnaround but the Stampeders are ready to continue their roll.

The Red & White host the Ottawa RedBlacks this Thursday at McMahon Stadium, looking to improve on their 2-0 start to the season.

It’ll be a tough test for the homeside, as the RedBlacks are coming off of a bye-week, while the Stamps will play their second game in five days.

“We have to refocus fast, it’s in a hurry,” said head coach Dave Dickenson Wednesday. “The energy is there, they just have to make sure they’re locked in and focused.

“Ottawa is a good team, they always start out the year super fast, in my opinion. It seems like their offence is clicking.

“Early in the year they’re as tough a matchup as anybody.”

The Stamps head into the game with confidence, coming off a decisive 41-7 victory over the Argonauts at BMO Field in Toronto Saturday night.

And while less than a week between games means a short time to prepare, there are some positives.

“It’s not as hard on your body because you’re not practicing per-say, but it is still hard on your body because you’re still recovering,” said defensive back Brandon Smith.

Defensive backs Jamar Wall, who played in Week 1 but not against the Argos, and Tunde Adeleke, who was injured in practice, will both miss the game on Thursday.

“It’s stressing us,” Dickenson explained. “But one man’s injury is another man’s opportunity. Whoever’s in, we expect them to play well.

“I’m putting the best roster together, and if you’re hurting and I don’t think you can make it through the game … there’s guys available that are good players, we’re going to go with those guys.”

“Around here we have the mantra of ‘the next man up’,” Smith agreed. “When you get your opportunity to step in, then you have to step in and compete – we shouldn’t be missing a beat.”

Wide receiver Lemar Durant should also make an appearance on the field Thursday, as both Julan Lynch and Marken Michel remain on the injured list.

Injuries aside, Dickenson still expects a well matched tilt between two very similar clubs.

“Both teams are balanced,” Dickenson said. “Both teams like to run the ball, play action, the receiving corps are fast, they make a lot of tough catches.

“Our quarterbacks are every accurate, they make a lot of good decisions. There are similarities there, for sure.

“It’s going to be one of those big challenges, and the defensive lines that get home are going to end up winning.”