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Tuesday, June 23, 2015

10 CFL PLAYERS TO WATCH IN 2015

The 2015 CFL season kicks off June 25 with the Montreal Alouettes facing the Ottawa Redblacks. Here's a list of 10 players to watch this year:

Travis Lulay - The 2011 Grey Cup MVP appeared in just one game last season, re-injuring his surgically repaired right throwing shoulder. Lulay, 31, threw for over 4,000 yards in 2011 and '12 with a combined 59 TDs and 21 interceptions. He had 2,841 passing yards with 19 TDs and 11 interceptions in 11 starts in '13 before being injured.

Bo Levi Mitchell - Mitchell guided Calgary to a CFL-best 15-3 record and league championship, finishing his first season as the starter being named the Grey Cup game MVP. Mitchell threw for over 3,300 yards with 22 TDs and just eight interceptions in 14 starts. Calgary looks to become just the third repeat Grey Cup champion since 1996-97.

Darian Durant - The Saskatchewan Roughriders were 8-2 in games Durant started last season but just 2-7 after Durant suffered a season-ending elbow injury. Durant, 32, had 4,154 yards with a career-best 31 TDs and 12 interceptions in 2013, leading the Riders to a Grey Cup championship at Mosaic Stadium.

S.J. Green - After three straight 1,000-yard seasons, the veteran slotback had 53 catches for 835 yards and four TDs last year as Duron Carter (75 catches, 1,030 yards, seven TDs) was Montreal's big-play receiver. Green had six catches for 126 yards and three TDs in the Als' East Division loss to Hamilton. And with Carter now with the NFL's Indianapolis Colts, Green is expected to reclaim his position as the club's go-to receiver.

Chris Williams - The standout receiver/kick-returner is back in the CFL with the Ottawa Redblacks after spending time in the NFL with New Orleans and Chicago. The five-foot-eight, 175-pound Williams was the Canadian league's top rookie with Hamilton in 2011 before being named its 2012 top special-teams performer. Williams had 153 catches for 2,362 yards and 17 TDs while returning 90 punts for 1,198 yards with the Ticats.

Brandon Banks - The five-foot-seven, 153-pound Banks was a one-man show for Hamilton in the playoffs. He returned two punts for TDs - with another being called back - in the Ticats' 40-24 East Division final win over Montreal. After a 45-yard TD catch against Calgary in the Grey Cup game, Banks had a late 90-yard return TD nullified by penalty, preserving the Stampeders' 20-16 victory.

Austin Collie - The former NFL star is looking to resurrect his football career with the B.C. Lions. Collie had 179 catches for 1,908 yards with 16 TDs over five NFL seasons with Indianapolis and New England Patriots. The Hamilton native missed extended time in 2010 with a concussion and nearly all of 2012 the result of a torn patellar tendon.

Solomon Elimimian - The B.C. Lions linebacker has a tough act to follow. Last season, Elimimian became the first true defensive player to be named the CFL's outstanding player after registering a league-record 143 tackles. He was also its top defensive performer. In 2010, the 28-year-old Elimimian captured the league's top rookie honour.

Jon Cornish - Despite playing nine regular-season games last year, the Calgary Stampeders star claimed a third straight rushing title with 1,082 yards. That earned the New Westminster, B.C., native a third consecutive top Canadian award after being named league MVP in 2013. A 2,000-yard season is possible if Cornish stays healthy.

Pierre Lavertu - The second-year centre from Laval has some big shoes to fill. The six-foot-three, 298-pound Lavertu replaces Brett Jones, the CFL's top lineman last year who's now with NFL's New York Giants. Calgary had high expectations for Lavertu when they traded up to take three-time All-Canadian first overall in the 2014 CFL Canadian draft.

(Canadian Press)

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

What about Dressler? He is going to be a big lift for the Riders compared to last year when he played very few games.

Anonymous said...

A year ago Huffer knew that Brett Jones would be gone to the NFL at the end of the year, so he trades up so that he can draft Pierre Lavertu and had a year to groom him to replace Jones.

What bothers me is that Taman never thinks that far ahead.

Anonymous said...

Add Alex Hall as a D-end to watch opposite John Chick.

I also think that Lamar Durant will fill the hole left by Nic Lewis in Calgary. He, along with Demski, will be interesting to watch as two emerging stars in the CFL for years to come.

Anonymous said...

Our GM Taman does think ahead fool!

Extending Chamblin is thinking ahead, signing Dressler for 4 years is thinking ahead, signing Durant is thinking ahead. Bringing in Emery is thinking ahead. Bringing in talented young receivers, linebackers, DB's, Brett Smith and Kevin Glenn, and an excellent draft pick in Connop to finally fill the void left with Shologan departure is thinking ahead.

I am not surprised that a Stamp fan such as yourself should be bothered by our GM building a winning team to give your team a run for their money this year. But I guess we will see how it all shakes out in the play-offs. Rider fans know the good work being done by our team management in the quest to return the Cup again to Sask.

Old Hank

Anonymous said...

Old Hank is gullible.

Young Henry

Anonymous said...

Young Henry doesn't have a clue

Anonymous said...

Sure ...... bringing in Glenn and Emery is thinking ahead ..... lol

@mrt_man said...

I am a fan of a lot of Tamans moves, but emery was a cup years late... not much thinking ahead there.

Anonymous said...

Old Hank; Just because I praise Hufnagel and critique Taman doesn't make me a Stamps fan. I've been bleeding green since the days of Ron Atchison but I'm not blinded by BS like you are.

Anonymous said...

emry just turned 29 so i think that was a good move and then towards the future

Anonymous said...

The guy bleeding green since the days of Ron Atchison has also lost too much oxygen to his little brain it would appear. Time to lose the Taman hate my friends and enjoy our great Rider team.

Anonymous said...

Anybody that gets upset with a comparison of the philosophies of Hufnagel and Taman is brainwashed. I just indicated which style I preferred and caused a war of words. LOL