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Redblacks QB Jonathon Jennings: 'We hurt ourselves big-time'

Five times in Saturday’s game against the Toronto Argonauts, the Ottawa Redblacks turned the ball over: three fumbles, an interception and a turnover on downs.

Add in 120 yards in penalties and it became a recipe for disaster, so the 46-17 trouncing the Redblacks took at the hands of the Argos shouldn’t have been surprising.

Jonathon Jennings, handed the keys to the starting quarterback job in the week before the game, looked good at times, tentative and conservative at others. At the root of Ottawa’s problems, though, were those mistakes. First, a Jennings fumble caused by Toronto’s Robbie Smith. Then, soon after an Ottawa interception, a Jennings pass was picked off by Toronto’s Alden Darby, taking a touchdown opportunity away from the home side. There were also fumbles by Mossis Madu and Brad Sinopoli that which cost the Redblacks dearly.

“It’s tough,” Jennings said moments after the game. “We have to eliminate the mistakes … that starts with myself. We have to find a way to be better in the red zone. We have to capitalize on opportunities and hang onto the ball. We hurt ourselves big-time. We turned the ball over. That stuff is costly.

“I look at the opportunities. Dom (Rhymes) was open, I missed him long. That was a potential touchdown. We had a potential touchdown and I threw an interception. If we turn those things around, the scoreboard plays out a bit differently. You look at that after a loss. I thought we did some decent things, but we have to be better.”

With a 3-8 record (1-8 in their past nine Canadian Football League games), the Redblacks will hope to figure out a way to win in Vancouver against the one-win B.C. Lions next Friday.

“We have another opportunity, against a West Coast team that’s not playing very well. We have to find a way to go there and win,” Jennings said. “I said before this game: Records don’t really matter in the CFL. People are paid to play, they’re paid to compete. Toronto has been in a lot of tough games where they should have won. The fact we didn’t get it done stings. But it hurts more because we know it’s an urgent matter. We have to get something going.”