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Rider Insider: Riders suffer 1st home loss of season

Welcome to "Down Week". Or perhaps "Caught-With-Our-Pants-Down Week".

Welcome to "Down Week". Or perhaps "Caught-With-Our-Pants-Down Week".It's going to be a long seven days around here after the Saskatchewan Roughriders suffered their first home loss of the season, 24-19 to the Toronto Argonauts Saturday afternoon at Mosaic Stadium.The Riders trailed the Argos for much of the afternoon but appeared in position to pull off a late come-from-behind victory when they had the Argos backed up in their own end for much of the fourth quarter.However two late gutsy third down fakes by Toronto caught the Riders off guard, sustained drives for the Argos, and allowed them to put the game away in the waning moments.If you missed it, Argo punter Jamie Boreham faked a kneel-down in the Toronto endzone and tossed the ball over his shoulder to Byron Parker who scrambled for a first down. On their next possession fullback Bryan Crawford took a direct snap on 3rd-and 2 which he converted to a first down. They capped the drive with a 28-yard touchdown pass to Jeremaine Copeland to seal the upset."Nobody wins here," a smiling Copeland told the Toronto Star. "For us to come in here and do that, I think it opens the eyes across the league that we are definitely a team that is not to be messed with."First-year Argo special teams coach Mike O'Shea got credit for the victory, and was touted by TSN's Michael Farber as a Coach of the Year candidate (even though he's not elligible)."They certainly wanted the win," admitted Rider head coach Ken Miller. "They were well prepared and did a great job of coaching. They just out-executed us."The Rider special teams unit was the scapegoat for the loss and plenty of heat's been directed towards coordinator Jim Daley. However Miller stands by his man."Certainly," Miller confirmed. "I don't think you can point to our special teams and say they're the reason we lost this game."The loss dropped the Riders to 9-5 and snapped their three game win streak. With the victory, the Argos improved to 7-7 as they avenged a 27-16 loss to Saskatchewan in Toronto the week before.It has certainly made things a lot more difficult for the Riders to achieve their goal of a first-place finish for the second-straight season. They host the first-place Calgary Stampeders Sunday at 2:00 in Regina.Many are devastated over this loss, however the main goal remains getting back to the Grey Cup. If they aren't playing that November afternoon in Edmonton, then THAT would be truly devastating.

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