Winnipeg Blue Bombers running back Joe Smith had some unusual praise for his offensive line Friday night.

''If they made holes like that and my grandmother was back there, she'd probably have had a 100-yard night,'' Smith said with a smile.

''They just did an outstanding job.''

He had good reason to feel that way. Smith finished with 12 carries for 101 yards - his highest total since joining the Bombers in a trade with B.C. last month - and scored a back-breaking touchdown late in Winnipeg's 25-16 victory over the struggling Toronto Argonauts.

Teammate Fred Reid also rushed 14 times for 106 yards as the Blue Bombers outgained the Argos 222-77 on the ground - a major reason why they're now four points up on Toronto with just three games left to play.

After maligned kicker Alexis Serna booted the go-ahead field goal midway through the fourth quarter, Smith barrelled in for an eight-yard insurance touchdown with 34 seconds left as the Bombers handed the Argonauts their sixth straight loss.

The win in front of 27,268 fans at Canad Inns Stadium puts the 6-9 Bombers on the verge of clinching second place in the CFL East Division. Winnipeg and Toronto (4-11) tied their season series at two wins apiece, but the Bombers are ahead on point differential.

Any Blue Bombers' win or Argos' loss over the final three weeks of the season would earn Winnipeg a playoff berth.

The Edmonton Eskimos also benefited from the Bombers' victory. At 8-6, the Eskimos have clinched at least a crossover playoff game, meaning all four teams in the West Division will make the playoffs.

Bombers receiver Milt Stegall raved about the Smith-Reid running duo and how important they could be in a cold playoff game.

''That weather may call on you (to run a lot),'' said Stegall, who had four catches for 42 yards.

''We got a slasher and then we've got a thrasher. We've got a good one-two punch and we're happy to have them.''

He welcomed the opportunity to get one more win to make it into the post-season.

''A lot of people are saying, `Shucks, you guys shouldn't be making the playoffs. There's a chance you won't have a winning record,''' said the 14-year veteran, who's still searching for his first Grey Cup victory.

''But no matter how you get in, just get in and we'll go from there. That's all that matters.''

Terrence Edwards was the offensive star for the Bombers, hauling in TD passes of five and 37 yards from Kevin Glenn.

Serna's 34-yard field goal with 7:21 left in the quarter put Winnipeg up 17-16. Serna was booed has he made his way onto the field, after missing wide right on a 36-yard attempt earlier in the game. He's only made two of his last eight attempts, although one attempt was after a bungled snap.

Jamal Robertson had a two-yard TD run and Mike Vanderjagt of Oakville, Ont., hit three field goals to lead the Argos. Vanderjagt also shanked a short attempt off the left upright late in the third quarter that would have given Toronto the lead.

Argos head coach Don Matthews, who is 0-5 since taking over from fired head coach Rich Stubler, blamed himself for the Bombers' decisive advantage in the rushing department.

''It's my job to put together a plan that stops that,'' Matthews said. ''I'm going to have to do that and I certainly didn't do that tonight.''

Argos quarterback Kerry Joseph said they have two games at home, and all three remaining games are indoors, so who knows what may happen.

''We've just got to take it one game at a time,'' he said.

Joseph was 25-of-36 for 311 yards, no TDs and no picks. Glenn completed 14 of 31 passes for 153 yards, two TDs and two interceptions.

Notes: Toronto rookie linebacker Jean-Nicolas Carriere was taken off the field on a cart in the third quarter with a leg injury. ... Winnipeg finishes on the road against Calgary and Montreal before hosting Hamilton in its season finale. Toronto hosts Montreal, travels to B.C. and closes out the regular season at home against Saskatchewan.