April 19, 2017

Checking Down: Maas getting his message across


TORONTO — Two weeks after the departure of Ed Hervey, Jason Maas is getting his message across.

Plus, is Juron Criner ready to build on his strong finish last November?

We check in on the latest around the league in this week’s Checking Down:

Jump to team:

BC | Calgary | Edmonton | Saskatchewan | Winnipeg | Hamilton | Toronto | Ottawa | Montreal



Charles Vaillancourt has a chance to win back his job in competition this spring (Larry MacDougal/CFL.ca)

– The BC Lions will have a second quarterback at mini-camp later this month after signing Bryan Scott out of Occidental College (BCLions.com).

– For Cameron Ontko, football’s war-like mentality hits a little bit closer to home as his brother is stationed with the U.S. National Guard in Jordan (Matt Baker, BCLions.com).

– After an injury put him out of a job last season, Lions guard Charles Vaillancourt is ready to battle back in his sophomore season (Matt Baker, BCLions.com).



Following the dismissal of Ed Hervey, Jason Maas looks to bring calm to the Eskimos (The Canadian Press)

– What’s next for Nate Coehoorn in retirement? The former Eskimo checks in with his plans (Morley Scott, CHED).

– Following the shock surrounding Ed Hervey’s dismissal, Eskimos head coach Jason Maas has been working on being in touch with every player on the team (Gerry Moddejonge, Edmonton Journal).



Bo Levi Mitchell says he’ll be using last year’s Grey Cup loss as extra motivation (The Canadian Press)

– It’s been a busy month for a handful of Stampeders players as Deron Mayo, Bo Levi Mitchell and Rene Paredes have become first-time fathers (Stampeders.com).

– This off-season, Bo Levi Mitchell has quarterbacked the bandwagon of another team in Calgary — the NHL’s Calgary Flames (Chris O’Leary, CFL.ca)

– The numbers are out and the Calgary Stampeders are the betting favourite to win the 105th Grey Cup Championship (Dane Belbeck, theScore).

– Bo Levi Mitchell isn’t forgetting the Grey Cup loss. Instead, he’s bottling it up and remembering it every game he plays in 2017 (Jeff Krever, CFL.ca).



The Riders’ new facilities have drawn rave reviews both from players and media (Riderville.com)

– According to Justin Dunk of 3 Down Nation, Chris Jones has attended the pro day of reported Riders neg list quarterback Maty Mauk (Justin Dunk, 3 Down Nation).

– The comeback is on for offensive lineman Dillon Guy, and it starts in Vero Beach, Fla. at Riders mini-camp (Ian Hamilton, Riderville.com).

– How state of the art are the Riders’ new facilities? Naaman Roosevelt says they’d rank among the best even south of the border (Jamie Nye, CFL.ca).


Jeff Miller/Bison Sports

The Bombers could assume some risk should they draft Geoff Gray first overall (Jeff Miller/Bison Sports)

– If the Bombers are eyeing Geoff Gray with the top pick, there could be some risk involved as Gray’s stock continues to rise south of the border (Mike Sawatzky, Winnipeg Free Press).

The Bombers have made three new additions to the roster, including international running back Kendall Roberson (BlueBombers.com).

– Winnipeg has also added international running back Johnta Hebert and international linebacker Jeremy Grable (BlueBombers.com).


Adam Gagnon/CFL.ca

The void left by the departed Brett Maher remains for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats (Adam Gagnon/CFL.ca)

– As the Ticats continue their search for a kicker, one option could be NFL kicker Jordan Gay, who is reportedly on the team’s neg list (Justin Dunk, 3 Down Nation).

– Bob Young is appealing to fans for support of light rail transit in the city, the Ticats’ owner wrote in an open letter on Tuesday (Ticats.ca).

– The Ticats have added two new internationals in running back Jeremy Stewart and receiver Gary Chambers (Ticats.ca).

– The Ticats could look internally for their next starter at SAM linebacker, with Demond Washington being an option (Josh Smith, 3 Down Nation).

– Competition will ramp up in late April as the Ticats bring more than 60 players to evaluate at their three-day mini-camp April 25-27 (Drew Edwards, The Hamilton Spectator).


Johany Jutras/Argonauts.ca

After moving around throughout his career, Shawn Lemon may have a permanent home (Johany Jutras/Argonauts.ca)

– The Argos will take the field for the first time under Marc Trestman later this month at their three-day mini-camp in Bradenton, Fla. April 25-27 (Argonauts.ca).

– After five CFL stops in five seasons, Argos defensive end Shawn Lemon is feeling at home in Toronto (CFL.ca).


Patrick Doyle/CFL.ca

Juron Criner will look to pick up on his late-season success heading into 2017 (Patrick Doyle/CFL.ca)

– The REDBLACKS have signed a pair of internationals in DL Darryl Paulo and REC Daniel Adams (OttawaREDBLACKS.com).

– After his emergence at the end of 2016, REDBLACKS receiver Juron Criner is looking to pick up exactly where he left off (Tim Baines, Ottawa Citizen).

– In the latest from Brodie OT, REDBLACKS pivot Trevor Harris talks about his unique training methods and a new addition to the family this off-season (Brodie Lawson, CFL.ca).


Montreal Alouettes

Darian Durant commanded the Alouettes’ huddle for the first time on Monday in Florida (Montreal Alouettes)

– The Montreal Alouettes wrapped up their three-day mini-camp last week, giving new veteran pivot Darian Durant a chance to build chemistry with his teammates (MontrealAlouettes.com).