Redblacks down Argos to head into playoffs on win streak
Ottawa cruises past Toronto in regular-season finale for both squads
Offensive lineman Jon Gott waited a long time to celebrate a touchdown in a way he wanted.
Gott rushed to the stands and chugged a beer handed to him by his girlfriend standing in the front row on Ottawa's final touchdown in a 24-9 Redblacks victory over the Toronto Argonauts on Friday in the regular-season finale for both teams.
"I got a little thirsty and I thought I'd quench it," said Gott. "It was all in fun. It was the last regular season game and hopefully I don't get in trouble too much, but we'll see."
Gott said he had been planning the chug for the past few seasons, and when his girlfriend nodded to him he knew the time was right.
"It was probably four years ago I thought of it and I finally just pulled the trigger. Hopefully [CFL commissioner Randy] Ambrosie takes it easy on me."
Watch highlights from Ottawa's win:
Backup quarterback Dominique Davis threw for 220 yards and a touchdown as Ottawa downed Toronto to head into the post-season with three straight wins.
It was a game where neither team had anything to play for in the standings. The Argonauts (4-14) will finish last in the East Division while the Redblacks (11-7) already had first place in the division and a bye to the East Final locked up following their win over Hamilton last week.
In the interest of staying healthy ahead of the East Final in two weeks, the Redblacks sat several starters including quarterback Trevor Harris, Brad Sinopoli, who leads the league with 116 receptions and William Powell along with his league-leading 1,362 rushing yards.
Davis took over the QB duties for Harris to start the game while Danny Collins went in for the second half.
"We just wanted to get win number 11, come out, take it one play at a time and play hard. That was the goal," Davis said.
"We had some guys that have been sitting around all year and wanted to go out there and showcase their talents and prove that they could be good players in the league, and I feel like they did."
The Redblacks got a 10-yard field goal from Lewis Ward on the opening drive of the game and a 57-yard single from punter Richie Leoni 65 seconds into the second quarter.
The Argos got three points back on a 30-yard Drew Brown field goal at 3:34 of the second.
The big play of the half was a 23-yard touchdown pass from Davis to Julien Feoli-Gudino followed up with a two-point conversion toss to Anthony Gosselin, giving the Redblacks a 12-3 lead eight minutes into the second quarter.
Davis finished the half 16-of-23 passing for his 220 yards, 44 of them on a reception to Dominique Rhymes.
Brown closed out the half with a 45-yard field goal in the final minutes cutting the lead to 12-6 at the half, and then kicked a 13-yard field goal on the Argos opening drive of the second half to make it a 12-9 game.
Collins first pass was intercepted and returned 44 yards to the Ottawa four-yard line, but Redblacks coach Rick Campbell challenged for pass interference and the call was overturned.
Collins promptly went two-and-out but, on Ottawa's next series after the Argos conceded a safety, he drove the Redblacks deep enough for Ward to kick a 32-yard field goal for a 17-9 lead midway through the third.
It was Ward's 48th consecutive field goal, adding to the all-time record in professional football he set two weeks ago.
"The regular season is done but we've still got a lot of work to do in the next couple of weeks. We've got two more games to go and I just want to keep doing my part and help this team be successful," Ward said, turning his thoughts to the playoffs.
"I don't know if it's fully sunken in yet. Right now we've got to do a lot of preparation for that game and I think we'll get a little more excited as we get close, but just having the opportunity is very exciting."
Collins completed 5-of-10 passes for 49 yards.
Following an interception by Toronto quarterback McLeod Bethel-Thompson, Collins took the Redblacks down field and Mossis Madu capped the drive with a one-yard touchdown run at 14:01 of the third. Ward converted the score for a 24-9 Ottawa lead and that's when Gott went and found himself a cold beverage.
The Argos will miss the playoffs after winning the Grey Cup in 2017.
"Our team played with great effort, they played with heart and they finished the season. Bottom line is in our business there are no moral victories," Argos coach Marc Trestman said. "...We didn't play well enough to win and we haven't all year."