- Free Agency
With files from Steve Daniel – CFL Head Statistician
TORONTO — Heading into Week 9, the playoff picture is slowly but surely starting to shape itself out throughout the league.
With Labour Day just around the corner, teams will continue to jostle for better positioning, as the schedule begins to approach the midway point of the season.
The action got underway on Thursday night, as Tanner Marsh and the Alouettes stunned the Lions in dramatic fashion for the victory.
On Friday, the Toronto Argonauts lost both Ricky Ray and the game against the Stampeders, as they were defeated on home soil by the Stamps.
Saturday afternoon will feature back-to-back games, as the Tiger-Cats and Blue Bombers close out their home-and-home set at Alumni Stadium in Guelph. Following the conclusion of that matchup, the Eskimos and Roughriders will clash at Edmonton’s Commonwealth Stadium.
Equipped with the most up-to-date storylines, roster moves, stats, milestones and trends, enjoy this week’s CFL.ca Game Notes.
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Thursday, 7:30 pm ET: Lions at Alouettes (MTL 39, BC 38)
Friday, 7:30 pm ET: Stampeders at Argonauts (CGY 35, TOR 14)
Saturday, 1:00 pm ET: Blue Bombers at Tiger-Cats
Saturday, 4:00 pm ET: Roughriders at Eskimos
By the Numbers:
500+ Passing Yards: In CFL history (1950-2013), a player has recorded 500 or more passing yards in a regular season game only 31 times. It has only been done twice in the playoffs and just once in Grey Cup history (by Sam Etcheverry with 508 in 1955). Last week, Mike Reilly made it #31 with 511 yards in Edmonton’s tough 36-33 loss at Toronto.
Here is a breakdown of some highlights from the list of 500+ passers:
– Sam Etcheverry was the first to accomplish the feat and he had the first two 500+ games, winning both.
– The first player to throw for 500 yards and not have his team win was Johnny Evans for Montreal in 1982.
– Overall, 500-yard passers have been on the winning team 20 times and 11 have lost. Of the last 12 times a QB has reached 500 yards, his team has won just 6 times.
– Kent Austin threw for 500+ 5 times. The next: Doug Flutie 3, Anthony Calvillo 3, Etcheverry, Moon and McManus twice each.
– Two of the 500+ yard totals came in the same game: October 23, 1993 (Doug Flutie 547, Kent Austin 546). The 1,093 passing yards in that game stands as the CFL combined record.
– Since Matt Dunigan’s landmark 713 yards in July 1994, only one QB has gone beyond 550 (and that was in 1994 as well).
– Among active CFL quarterbacks only Anthony Calvillo, Kevin Glenn, Darian Durant and Mike Reilly have reached the 500 mark. And finally, 500 yards has been reached only 3 times in the last 9 years. Of the 31 total occurrences, 11 came in the 1991 to 1994 era when many of the CFL’s total offence and passing records were set.
S.J. Green: Only Fred Stamps (423) has more yards over the last 4 games than S.J. Green. Over that 4-game span he has 23 catches for 366 yards, 2 TDs and 2 for 30+ yards to go with an incredible 12 second down receptions for 1st downs. He is on pace for a career-high 1,419 yards and he is #2 among all pure wide receivers in YAC yards with 191.
Solomon Elimimian and Adam Bighill: Last week the two BC all-star LBs combined for 16 of the club’s 44 defensive tackles. They have combined for nearly 25% of BC’s tackles despite Bighill being absent for most of 3 games this year.
The Alouettes lost eight starters in last week’s loss to the Roughriders. Among them who won’t be playing this week are Anthony Calvillo, Kyries Hebert, Josh Bourke and Brandon London. Josh Neiswander will make his first CFL start in place of Calvillo.
The Stampeders might be without Jon Cornish when they face the Argonauts in Toronto. Last year’s Most Outstanding Canadian suffered a thigh contusion during Calgary’s Week 8 loss to the Lions.
The Blue Bombers announced earlier this week that QB Max Hall will make his second-straight start under centre, as the Bombers head to Guelph to take on the Ticats.
Roster moves will be updated as the weekend progresses.
Consecutive Games – 0 Interceptions: Though research is ongoing into this one, all available records back to 1950 show that only Dave Dickenson in 2000 has ever gone seven games in a row without throwing an interception (and with a minimum of 10 pass attempts in each game). This year, Ricky Ray and Darian Durant have each gone 6 games in a row without one and have a chance to match Dickenson’s mark this week.
For the record, here are the longest interception-free game streaks for the other active QBs: Anthony Calvillo 6 (2000), Kevin Glenn 6 (2007), Kerry Joseph 6 (2007-08), Henry Burris 4 (2005), Buck Pierce 3 (2007), Travis Lulay 3 (2011, 2012), Drew Tate 3 (2011), Mike Reilly 2 (2012, 2013).
1,000 Career Receptions: Last week, Geroy Simon became the third player to ever record 1,000 career receptions and now needs just 5 yards to be the first to get to 16,000 total. He needs one more 100-yard game to match Allen Pitts at 64, and has caught at least one pass in 177-straight games.
38 in a row: Last week Rene Paredes made both of his FG attempts to extend his CFL record for consecutive makes to 38, 8 more than the 30 that BC’s Paul McCallum had in 2011. Paredes’ last miss was 14 games ago on Sep 23, 2012 from 45 yards at Regina.
2000+ yards rushing: Kory Sheets has 919 yards (131.3 per game) and is on pace to reach 2,363, well over 2,000 and a mark only Mike Pringle achieved in 1998 with a record 2,065 yards.
Calgary’s Jon Cornish is still close too with a pace for 1,926 yards. Looking at the 8-game stage, no player has ever reached 1,000 yards in his team’s first 8 games. However, two players have reached 1,000 in their first 8 games (Cory Philpot at 1,073 in 1994 & Dave Thelen at 1,008 in 1960 – each of them missed one game early in their seasons).