- Free Agency
Hello, Winnipeg Blue Bombers, you thrill-seeking, adrenaline junkies, you. What’d you do for kicks this weekend? Let me guess. You took turns escaping from chains and shackles as you were lowered, upside down, into a tank of water. Be careful with all of that, though. The feeling can become addictive and you’ll always be looking for more. Next thing you know, you’re at the zoo, playing chicken with a charging rhino. Though I suspect that’s something Taylor Loffler already does.
Here are this week’s takeaways.
From the producers of Bryan Burnham’s touchdown catch, a rarity. A sequel that’s as good as the original. Duron Carter’s sensational backhanded touchdown reception has done what I personally thought was impossible a fortnight ago; rivalled Burnham’s own ridiculous major.
Don’t make me choose between those two catches because I won’t. The two of them can stand on the podium together. What I can and should do, is treat Carter’s catch the way I did Burnham’s in this space two weeks ago. Here goes:
Duron Carter’s touchdown catch prompted the ghost of Leonardo da Vinci to appear unto him last night and it whispered just six words: “Teach me to paint like that.” Republicans and Democrats in the U.S. senate voted unanimously in favour of Duron Carter’s touchdown catch. Then they all hugged each other. Cris Carter was stopped six times by people on Sunday, each of them saying “aren’t you Duron Carter’s dad?” Duron Carter’s touchdown catch will be the subject of a six-part Ken Burns documentary. Jay-Z has already written, produced and dropped an entire album based on Duron Carter’s touchdown catch. After seeing Duron Carter’s touchdown catch, physicist Stephen Hawking downgraded next month’s solar eclipse from “essential, incredible, once-in-a-lifetime viewing” to “pretty good, I guess.”
Carter kept saying he would light things up in Sasky, given time. Well, this week he spent his entire allowance on fireworks and it was oh so worth it. The year of the receiver. Who’s next?
Speaking of lighting things up, I hear that film and videotape will put on an impressive, multi-coloured display when burned. Should be quite a show this week, then, if a couple of teams and a player take me up on my advice to just burn, baby, burn. The Montreal Alouettes can find a lot of good in the tape from their 41-40 loss in Winnipeg. Keep the first fifty-eight minutes and twenty seconds of that. But absolutely toss the last one minute and forty seconds into the blaze. Red and blue flames will lick the night sky.
Argos’ defensive back Johnny Sears Jr. can then follow up with a short snippet of the moment he let Saskatchewan receiver Bakari Grant get up and run for a first down. Two shades of blue tinted flames take over. The crowd oohs and aahs. Then, the finale. The Hamilton Ticats throw the entirety of their Saturday night game film into the flames. The fire burns golden, the smoke turning black.
I feel for you all, I truly do. Burn that stuff and walk away, never speaking of it again.
The Edmonton Eskimos lost starting running back John White due to a knee injury a few weeks back and then lost back up Kendial Lawrence, too. But never fear, they had Travon Van ready to step in and take on the load, which he did pretty decently. On Friday night, Van went down to injury during the first quarter and the Eskimos turned to veteran fullback Calvin McCarty to lug the rock. McCarty turned in a solid, solid effort, rushing eleven times for 45 yards and chipping in nicely on pass protection, effective enough to keep the BC Lions defence guessing as the Eskimos’ air attack went to work. It was a return, of sorts, to McCarty’s younger days. Now in his eleventh year, the 32-year-old looked like the young buck who used to be given the ball 50, 60, even 80 times in a season. Calvin McCarty’ll do in a pinch? Actually, he’ll more than do.
When the Toronto Argonauts traded up to get the third overall pick in the 2014 draft, it was thought that they’d snagged the heir apparent to the aging, inspiring Andre Durie. In making Anthony Coombs an Argo, the team had found another YAC monster, it was assumed. In his first three seasons, however, Coombs flashed some brilliance here and there, teasing but never really bursting through to consistent star status. The 2017 season has looked different than that for Coombs, who seems to have found his pro game, catching, turning and running with authority, the way Durie did. Against Saskatchewan on Saturday night, Coombs hauled in nine passes for 97 yards, more than half of those yards coming after the catch. With sticky hands and authoritative running, he’s on pace for a hundred catches and a thousand yards. Looks like the promise is being fulfilled.
If you played hooky on Saturday night, you have an immense amount of material to catch up on, students. Kevin Glenn and Ricky Ray turned in a master class in quarterbacking at Mosaic. It was so good, the University of Saskatchewan should immediately announce that they’re giving the two of them honorary degrees in something. Heck, honorary degrees in everything. Glenn, at 38-years-old, went 24-for-37 for 340 yards and four touchdowns, with zero interceptions. His quarterback efficiency rating on the night was 130.5, for crying out loud. Ray, who’ll be 38-years-old in October, went 28-for-38 for 386 yards and three touchdowns, with no interceptions. Efficiency rating? 132.1, again, for crying out loud. I’m pretty sure I saw Glenn come out for one series wearing a tweed jacket with elbow patches. And between possessions, Ray didn’t sit on the bench, but rather on a leather wingback chair, where he smoked a pipe and used the word “indeed” a lot.
60 to 1 would be an excellent ratio if we were talking number of M&Ms to a mouthful and not a football score.