CALGARY — Hamilton quarterback Jeremiah Masoli will see some familiar faces Friday at McMahon Stadium after being named the Tiger-Cats’ Week 4 starter in the absence of Zach Collaros.
A pair of Stampeders — receiver Simon Charbonneau-Campeau and defensive end Shawn Lemon — are both former teammates of Masoli’s.
“Obviously, he’s a QB who can move and run,” said Charbonneau-Campeau, who spent time with Masoli in Hamilton before being traded to the Stamps this past off-season. “He can make plays with his feet, so I think the defence is going to take care of that first. What I know from him is he’s good throwing the deep ball, so he’ll probably take a few shots. I think our DBs are going to make plays on those receivers. That’s what we have to do.”
Charbonneau-Campeau went on to explain that winning is the No. 1 priority heading into Friday’s game. Catching up with old friends will happen afterwards.
“I played with Masoli for one year on the scout team and practising together,” he said. “When you’re on a team, you have a certain relationship with most of the players. I have a relationship with them but the first thing I want to do is win the game and forget that friendship. Maybe after the game I’ll talk to them, but not in the game.”
With Zach Collaros out, the Hamilton Tiger-Cats will go with Jeremiah Masoli under centre Friday in Calgary.
Lemon, who will hope to add to Hamilton’s league-worst 14 sacks allowed, says he knows exactly what to expect from the shifty quarterback ahead of Friday’s matchup.
“I’m just going to take the same approach and do things within the scheme of the defence and take my proper reads,” said Lemon, who was Masoli’s teammate in Edmonton two years ago.
“I know what to expect from a type of quarterback like him. We’ll just stick to the things we’ve been doing throughout the season. He’s a similar quarterback to the Troy Smith-type who can pull the ball and run, so we’ll need to just stick to the things we did throughout the season and stick to the game plan.”
The Stamps’ defensive end watched Masoli grow as a quarterback during their time with the Eskimos.
“He’s a good quarterback,” said Lemon. “I spent some time with him in Edmonton when he first came into the league and we saw a lot of progress from him throughout the year. He brings a different dynamic to the game as far as the zone-read game. He’s a quarterback that can pull it and run, so we’ve just got to be alert.”
Stamps linebacker Glenn Love, a former UCLA Bruin who saw Masoli during his college days at Oregon, knows his defence will have to make contact with the Ticats quarterback early in the game.
“He’s a quarterback who plays like a running back, so we’ll have to tackle him,” said Love. “He’s going to look at his first and second threat and, after that, he’s going to take off on you.”
No matter who lines up under centre for the Ticats, Charbonneau-Campeau says the goal is simple.
“It’s simple — we just have to score more points than they do,” he said. “That’s pretty much it. We have to execute. We have a short week, so the guys need to be focused to avoid mental errors and get into the playbook and just be sharp on game day.”