Stephen: Tough decision looms for Hufnagel | | Official Site of the Canadian Football League

Heading into their regular season finale in Edmonton on Friday night, the Calgary Stampeders know where they’ll be the following week.

Regardless of the result at Commonwealth Stadium, the Stamps will be the host team in the Western Semi-Final on Nov.11.

While it seems like the Stamps have it all figured out, there’s still a matter of who will be under centre when they face off against a yet-to-be-determined opponent at McMahon Stadium.

The Stampeders will start Drew Tate at quarterback for the first half, while Kevin Glenn will take over the in the second.  

And, if possible, they will give third string quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell some work.
After all is said and done, the Calgary coaching staff will sit down and distill all the results, with the intention of naming a starting QB for the playoffs. If you’re one who is low on patience, then you’re in luck. General Manager and Head Coach John Hufnagel said he will make the announcement regarding Calgary’s main man under centre on Tuesday morning.

There are plenty of factors for Hufnagel to consider as he makes his choice.

The Stamps have played most of this season under Glenn.  It is no stretch to suggest the Stamps wouldn’t be in the position they are without the steady hand of the 33-year-old.  He has thrown touchdown passes in 11-straight games while winning 10 of his 15 starts.

On the other hand Tate had a very strong start to the season. During the first five quarters of the year, he was fulfilling the big expectations the Stampeders had for him when he took over as starter. Plus, he was the number one quarterback coming out of camp.  

Should he be replaced because of injury?

For Hufnagel, there are the practical matters of advancing in the playoffs. The Stamps are hoping to follow up their strong regular season with an even stronger post-season. Undoubtedly, the lights will be on late at McMahon Stadium as Hufnagel and company make their choice.

While the quarterback picture sorts itself out, the Stampeders will head north without one of their feature performers.  Slotback Nik Lewis is expected to stay in Calgary as he recuperates from various ailments.  

The team is also expecting a couple of other players to return to the roster.  Returner Larry Taylor, who was enjoying a banner season until a September knee injury, is expected to join the roster.  The team is also anticipating the return of team rookie-of-the-year nominee Chris Randle at linebacker.

The game may have no bearing in the standings for the Stampeders but they want to continue their hot play as they enter the playoffs.  

The team has won four of their last five as they prepare for post-season. They also could have a huge say in the Edmotnon Eskimos’ fortunes.  By the time both teams take the field on Friday, the Eskimos should know what is at stake for them to qualify for the playoffs.  

The Stampeders have already had a big say in Edmonton’s season, having defeated them three times.

So the regular season wraps up with a little quarterback controversy and a potential playoff spot hanging in the balance, Friday night in Edmonton.

About Mark

Mark Stephen is Sports Director of CHQR Radio in Calgary and has broadcast Calgary Stampeder games since 1996. Follow Mark on Twitter @MarkonFootball.

Fan Comments
als rule
huffy has had a difficult year as HC and GM BUT what he needs right now is for all his crtics to keep QUITE!!
November 01, 2012 - 1:11am
How is this a tough decision? The answer is simple, dance with the one who brought you, that being Kevin Glenn, until he gives you a reason to take him out. After all, he is no ordinary backup he is Kevin Glenn, the most under rated QB in the league.
October 31, 2012 - 9:50pm
Given the injury problems earlier in the year, this is a relatively nice "problem" for Hufnagel to have. I think Glenn has been an undervalued asset in the CFL. He's shown himself to be a class act in unpleasant 2QB scenarios. I hope he finally gets his well deserved Grey Cup shot this year.
October 31, 2012 - 7:37pm
Maybe Kevin Glenn can't carry a team on his back (or arm) as some great qbs can but with some support he can get the job done more often than not. Regardless of the hype he's received, Drew Tate is as yet an unproven qb. I don't doubt that he has talent but he doesn't have experience as yet. If I were the coach I would favor Glenn for that reason, with Tate in reserve. (I'm sure many remember the Lion's two qb system of some years back. It was pretty successful.)
October 31, 2012 - 6:23pm