EDMONTON — Three years ago all-star slotback Fred Stamps became a father to Fred III and his last three seasons with the Green and Gold have been among his best.
“Pops (Equipement Manager Dwayne Mandrusiak) gave (Fred III) a football two years ago and he loves it. He’s always walking around the house throwing it. He’s got a pretty good arm and he gets mad at me if I don’t catch the ball,” says Stamps.
“Being away from my family for so long during the season is hard. So, when I get home during the off-season, it’s big Fred and little Fred time. I want tospend all of my time with him.
This past season was Stamps’ seventh in Eskimos colours and it was arguably his best.
In just 15 games, Stamps recorded his fifth consecutive 1,000 yard season, a career high 11 touchdowns, 1,259 receiving yards on 68 catches, good enough for his second receiving title of his career.
Incredible numbers for the veteran receiver who missed three games to injury.
Stamps is arguably one of the best receivers the Canadian Football League has seen in the last decade.
“I feel like the sky is the limit for me when it comes to football. It’s been something I’ve been doing since I was a kid. If I can stay healthy next year there will be nothing holding me back,” says Stamps.
It’s rare for an athlete in this era to stay with a single franchise for their entire career. But Stamps wants to be one of them.
He wants nothing more than to continue chasing a Grey Cup championship with the Edmonton Eskimos.
“My grandfather always told me to be loyal in whatever I pursue in life. That’s how I was raised.”
“The year was tough…very tough when you go 4-14 it’s never good, but the good thing is we have a real strong core and we need to try and build off that. That’s what championship teams are made of.
“I love playing for this franchise. I love being here because they have so much tradition. I’ve never been involved with a team that has so much tradition and I love that.
“If you look on the walls you see a bunch of guys who have been here and won Grey Cup championships and that’s something that I want. It wouldn’t feel right with another team. I want a championship with Edmonton.”