July 25, 2017 7:07 pm

Edmonton Eskimos receiver Duke Williams showing more facets to his game

Edmonton Eskimos' Adarius Bowman, from left to right, Brandon Zylstra and D'haquille Williams celebrate Williams' touchdown against the B.C. Lions during the first half of a CFL football game in Vancouver, B.C., on Saturday, June 24, 2017.


Edmonton Eskimos receiver Duke Williams burst on to the scene in training camp, catching almost every ball his way during practice and the two pre-season games. In his regular season debut Williams caught four passes for 110 yards and a touchdown against the B.C. Lions.

Since then Williams’ production has slowed to the tune of eight catches for 68, with his longest reception being 12 yards.

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Last Thursday in Hamilton, Williams caught five passes for 38 yards and threw the key block to spring fellow receiver Vidal Hazelton, who scored the game winning touchdown in the final minute.

READ MORE: Edmonton Eskimos beat Hamilton Tiger-Cats to remain undefeated

On Tuesday, Williams said he’s trying to show the coaching staff his versatility.

“First game they were close to me, every time I went up for the ball either I was in front of them or lined up with them,” Williams said. “Now three weeks later the balls in the air and they are already in a position where I’m going to be at so I have to make some type of adjustment to the ball.

“Overall we’re winning so I can’t complain, and I’m just going to control what I can control and continue to make plays whenever the ball is thrown my way.”

READ MORE: Eskimos rookie receiver appreciates second chance from Esks

The Eskimos don’t have Adarius Bowman in their lineup, as he’s on the six-game injured list with a hamstring injury. Brandon Zylstra leads the Eskimos in receiving yards with 409, which is good for fifth in the CFL. He has three 100 yard receiving games.

Friday is not just another game

The old adeage in football is the most important game on your schedule is the next game. The Eskimos next game is this Friday on The Brick Field at Commonwealth Stadium against the B.C. Lions. It will be a first place battle as the Eskimos are 4-0 while the Lions are 4-1.

For head coach Jason Maas, Friday’s game is more than just another game.

“You won’t hear that from me,” Maas said. “I personally believe that you and I said it when we played Ottawa, there’s some games you need to try and find motivation for. If you can’t get up for this one and understand that this one’s different. It’s 4-0 meets 4-1, it’s for first place, and it’s for the season series.

“You live for moments like this and I told our guys at the beginning of the week, you put yourselves in this position so love it, own it, and make the most of this.”

Kick-off Friday on The Brick Field at Commonwealth Stadium is 7:30 p.m., 630 CHED will have Countdown to Kick-off at 6 p.m.

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