TORONTO — Week 3 kicks off on Thursday night as another slate of CFL games are on the horizon.
It all begins in Montreal as the Alouettes welcome the Saskatchewan Roughriders to Percival Molson Stadium. With Vernon Adams Jr. sidelined with an illness, it’ll be Trevor Harris taking over the Als offence. Harris and co. will have their hands full with a Riders defence that has accumulated 13 sacks throughout the first two weeks of the season.
On Friday night the Winnipeg Blue Bombers host the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in a rematch of the 108th Grey Cup. After letting a substantial halftime lead slip through their fingers last week against Calgary, Hamilton will hope to turn things around to get their first win of the season this weekend. It won’t be easy, however, as the reigning champions are 2-0 so far this year and will have their fans at IG Field loudly behind them.
Saturday’s doubleheader begins in Calgary for a battle of Alberta with the Edmonton Elks paying a visit to the Stampeders at McMahon Stadium. Edmonton will hope to see a bit more success on the field in their third game of the season while the Stamps hope to carry the momentum from their thrilling overtime comeback win in Hamilton last week.
And finally, things end in BC where the Lions host the Toronto Argonauts on Saturday night at BC Place. Both teams have played just one game this season, enjoying early-season byes, and sit 1-0 apiece. After a Week 1 outing that saw 59 points on the board, Nathan Rourke and his high-powered offence will be anxious to do much of the same this weekend. In order to do that, they’ll have to go against a tough Argos defence that will be itching to slow down the Leos.
- Saturday’s contest against Toronto will be BC’s Nathan Rourke’s fourth career start (2-1). The Victoria native is looking to become just the second Canadian QB to start his career with a 3-1 record.
- Notable Canadian pivots after four starts:
- Frank Cosentino | 3-1
- Gerry Doucette | 2-2
- Don Getty | 2-2
- Greg Vavra | 2-2
- Gerry Dattilio | 1-2-1
- Eric Guthrie | 1-3
- Russ Jackson | 1-3
- Through two games, the Roughriders have registered 13 sacks – nine more than any other club.
- Ten different players have recorded a sack with Pete Robertson (3) and Larry Dean (2) collecting more than one.
- Saskatchewan takes on the Alouettes this week, who have allowed six sacks through two games.
STALLIONS DOWN THE STRETCH
- Calgary is 2-0, but has trailed by 10+ points in each game.
- The Stampeders have trailed each game after three quarters. From 2015 to 2021, they were 10-18 under those circumstances.
- Calgary’s 24-point turnaround in Hamilton was the franchise’s sixth comeback from 20+ points and two shy of the team record; it was also the eighth largest in league history.
- It was also the second time in league history that a team has recovered from a 24-0 deficit.
- Seven of eight contests (88 per cent) have been decided in the final three minutes, with four coming down to late game drives.
- Games this year have averaged 48.1 points per game – an increase of 11.7 per cent.
- There have been 16 lead changes this season and four games have been decided by three points or less.
- Week 1 quarterbacks scrambled out of the pocket on 20 occasions, but only 12 times in Week 2.
- The Riders are looking to start 3-0 in back-to-back years.
- Montreal’s Eugene Lewis registered consecutive 100-yard games to open the season (239 yards total). Lucky Whitehead accomplished the feat with BC in 2021, totaling 244 yards.
- Hamilton and Winnipeg have split their previous eight games, with six being double-digit victories.
- Last week, the Ticats’ Tim White recorded career marks in targets (14), catches (11) and receiving yards (131).
- Hamilton’s Dane Evans made a career-high 36 completed passes, while recording the second-ever 400+ yard game.
- Collaros has passed for 416 yards, three touchdowns, and one interception through two games. He is a career 1-2 against Hamilton.
- Winnipeg is 2-0 after recording 19-17 and 19-12 victories over Ottawa. Since 2015, when failing to reach 20 points, the Bombers are 5-21; when holding opponents to fewer than 20, the team is 31-2.
- Last week, Edmonton’s Kenny Lawler set career highs with 17 targets and 12 receptions. His 149 yards was the highest by a receiver this season, and it was his fourth career 100-yard game.
- Nick Arbuckle will make his third start for the Elks this week. It will be his first start against his former team – the Stampeders.
- On Saturday, Bo Levi Mitchell will play in his 150th game in the CFL (86-22-2 – .791). He has more career wins against Edmonton than any other opponent (13-4).
- Rene Paredes has made his last 26 field goal attempts, for the eighth-longest streak in CFL history. It is the third-longest streak of his career (32 and 39).
- Bryan Burnham is looking to extend his streak of games with a catch to 98. Over that stretch, he has 439 receptions for 6,648 yards and 38 TDs.
- The Argos registered one 2-and-out last week, after averaging 4.5 per game in 2021. Through two weeks this season, teams have combined to average 9.6 per game.
- Toronto last faced a starting Canadian QB was on October 27, 1996, coincidentally against the Lions, with Giulio Caravatta under centre.