Tuesday, October 24, 2017
THE POINT AFTER: WEEK 19
The B.C. Lions, Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Montreal Alouettes are out of playoff contention but can still impact the CFL post-season.
B.C. (6-10) visits Winnipeg (11-5) on Saturday to face a Blue Bombers team that can clinch second in the West Division with a victory. Even if the Lions win, the Bombers would clinch home-field advantage for the conference semfinal if Calgary (13-2-1) beats third-place Edmonton (10-6) on Sunday.
Should Winnipeg lose and Edmonton win, the Bombers would need to defeat Calgary on Nov. 3 to clinch second in the West.
A Riders loss Friday to Montreal (3-13) and Edmonton win over Calgary would make Saskatchewan (9-7) the crossover team and third playoff seed in the East.
But if Saskatchewan and Calgary both win, the Riders' regular-season finale at home to the Eskimos on Nov. 4 would decide third in the West. The Riders won the first meeting 54-31 at Edmonton on Aug. 25.
Hamilton (5-11) is in Ottawa on Friday night. The Redblacks (7-9-1) have cemented an East Division playoff spot but are second behind idle Toronto (8-9).
A tie or Hamilton win would give Toronto first and home-field advantage for the East final. If Ottawa prevails, the Argos could secure top spot with a win or tie against B.C. on Nov. 4.
HARRIS WATCH: Andrew Harris's historic quest took a bit of a hit Saturday.
The Winnipeg native was held to 32 yards rushing and two catches for four yards in the Bombers' 29-28 road loss to Toronto. That leaves Harris with 903 rushing yards and 96 catches for 820 yards with two regular-season games remaining.
Harris is attempting to become the first CFL player to accumulate 1,000 yards rushing and receiving in the same season.
Winnipeg hosts B.C. on Saturday needing a victory to clinch second in the West Division and home field for the conference semifinal. Should the Bombers win, Harris could see limited playing time in the regular-season finale versus Calgary, thus impacting his ability to register the historic double.
COLLAROS'S FUTURE: Zach Collaros's future in Hamilton looks bleak.
With the Ticats out of playoff contention, Collaros saw his first game action in nine weeks Sunday. He appeared in just one series in Hamilton's 43-16 win over Montreal, completing two passes for 24 yards.
Collaros lost his starting job in August when June Jones became interim head coach and promoted backup Jeremiah Masoli. The Ticats are 5-3 since.
Masoli started against Montreal and was 12-of-19 passing for 320 yards and two TDs into the fourth quarter. Collaros was replaced by Everett Golson, who completed the only pass he threw for 14 yards.
Hamilton reportedly discussed a trade with Saskatchewan involving Collaros earlier this season and there was talk Toronto was interested in re-acquiring the 29-year-old quarterback.
But Hamilton opted against dealing Collaros at the CFL trade deadline. Prior to being benched Collaros, who has a year remaining on his contract, had lost 12 straight starts, one short of the league record.
Masoli's emergence isn't the only factor weighing against Collaros's return to Hamilton. The Ticats also have former NFL first-round pick Johnny Manziel on their negotiation list.
Collaros's CFL career began with Toronto in 2012 and he was 5-2 as the starter in '13 when veteran Ricky Ray was injured. Collaros signed with Hamilton as a free agent before the 2014 season.
He was enjoying a stellar '15 campaign - 3,376 passing yards with 25 TDs and only eight interceptions through 12 games - before suffering a season-ending knee injury.
FAMILIAR SUB-PLOT: Duron Carter stole the spotlight in Saskatchewan's 30-7 road win over Calgary on Friday night but a familiar sub-plot played out again for the Riders.
Carter, Saskatchewan's leading receiver, returned an interception 43 yards for a TD in his first-ever start at cornerback. The six-foot-five, 205-pound Carter was pressed into service due to injuries in the Riders' secondary.
However, Canadian Brandon Bridge replaced veteran starter Kevin Glenn early in the first half. Riders head coach Chris Jones made the switch to counter a Calgary pass rush that was pressuring Glenn.
Bridge finished 10-of-19 passing for 133 yards and two interceptions while rushing for 40 yards on four carries. On Oct. 7, the Mississauga, Ont., native replaced Glenn to complete 20-of-28 passes for 292 yards and two TDs in a 27-24 road win over Toronto.
Jones reiterated Glenn remains his starter and said Monday that Carter will play offence and defence Friday night versus Montreal.
IANNUZZI RETIRING: B.C. receiver Marco Iannuzzi tweeted Saturday he'll retire at season's end.
Iannuzzi, 30, is completing his seventh year with the Lions, who took the Calgary native sixth overall in the 2011 CFL draft out of Harvard.
Iannuzzi has 34 catches for 425 yards this season and 141 receptions for 1,162 yards and eight TDs in 114 regular-season games. He helped B.C. win the '11 Grey Cup.
HEBERT SOLID: Montreal's miserable season has been a memorable one for Kyries Hebert.
The 37-year-old linebacker had seven tackles in Montreal's 43-16 home loss to Hamilton on Sunday. That pushed Hebert's season total to 103, making him the first player in CFL history over 35 to surpass 100 tackles.
Herbert's previous career high was 78 tackles, set last year.
HELPING HAND: Mike (Pinball) Clemons has done it all with the Toronto Argonauts.
Toronto's current vice chair won four Grey Cups with the franchise as a player and coach. He's an all-time Argo and in '08 was inducted into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame.
Hours after Toronto's 29-28 home win over Winnipeg on Saturday night, Clemons, 52, dressed in a suit, was seen helping the equipment staff carry duffle bags from BMO Field.