TORONTO — It’s revenge week in the Canadian Football League, as five of six teams go into their Week 5 matchup against the same team they played previously.
Thursday Night Football kicks off Week 5 in Ottawa where the REDBLACKS take on the Calgary Stampeders at 7:30 p.m. ET. Both teams top their respective divisions, with the Stampeders the lone undefeated team remaining. Ottawa will be looking to even the season series after dropping the first meeting 24-14 in Week 3.
The Toronto Argonauts and the Edmonton Eskimos will complete their home-and-home series at The Brick Field at Commonwealth Stadium on Friday beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET. Argonauts quarterback James Franklin won his first start with his new team against his former team, while 2017’s Most Outstanding Player Mike Reilly is now 2-6 in his career versus the double blue. The game will be a live mic game and Grammy-winning international recording artist Ludacris will perform at halftime.
The final game of the week has Winnipeg’s Adam Bighill making his return to BC after spending six seasons with the BC Lions before going to play for the NFL’s New Orleans Saints. Bighill appeared in 99 games with the Leos, with whom he compiled 579 tackles during his time on the west coast. BC will be looking to bounce back after losing 41-19 in Winnipeg last week.
CALGARY BYE WEEK = W
Following a Week 4 bye, the Stampeders head to Ottawa to take on the REDBLACKS Thursday night.
Calgary is 16-0 coming off a bye since 2005. Their last loss following a bye was July 1, 2005 in Week 2 when they had yet to play a game that season.
Over those 16 post-bye games, a rested Calgary team has outscored opponents 567-346 and by an average margin of plus-13.8 points. More remarkably, Calgary has not lost an in-season post-bye game since July 15, 2004 at Montreal.
Calgary is 10-0 in those post-bye games on the road.
This season teams are 2-1 coming off a bye. This week three teams are on byes, Saskatchewan, Hamilton and Montreal.
Hamilton’s Jeremiah Masoli (6,201) and Edmonton’s Mike Reilly (6,255) are on pace for 6,000-plus passing yard seasons. They are both on pace for career bests and their first 6,000 passing yard seasons.
6,000 passing yards in a season has occurred five time by four different players:
6,619 | Doug Flutie | 1991 | BC
6,225 | Kent Austin | 1992 | SSK
6,092 | Doug Flutie | 1993 | CGY
6,041 | Anthony Calvillo | 2004 | MTL
6,023| David Archer | 1993 | SAC
Bo Levi Mitchell leads the CFL in deep throws per game (20-plus yards depth) at 9.7 per game. Harris has tried 6.7 deep throws per game. Both of them have completed three TD passes of 20-plus yards.
Recent QB Changes:
Chris Streveler averaged 8.5 yards per pass attempt. Matt Nichols, in his first game of the season, averaged 13.0 yards per attempt. That’s the third-highest average behind Mitchell (13.8) and Masoli (13.6).
Winnipeg’s Shayne Gauthier leads the league with nine special team tackles. He is currently on pace to break the single-season record of 37 set by Wade Miller in 1999 and Dylan Barker in 2009.
Gauthier’s current pace is 40-plus tackles.
MISSED FIELD GOAL OR ONSIDE KICK?
CFL head statistician Steve Daniel created this new statistical category so we did not penalize place kickers who are asked to kick away from the goal posts by their coach’s decision. Like Justin Medlock, who was on a field goal streak last year when he was directed by Mike O’Shea to purposefully miss, each kick in this category was recovered by a teammate to create a first down. Therefore, Medlock and Sean Whyte have not been charged with a field goal miss, but rather recorded as having made “onside kicks”. There now have been 20 “onside kicks” since 1993.
CFL kickers are hitting at a record pace of 87.8 per cent (65 of 74 field goal attempts). There have been just nine misses in 16 CFL games thus far.
The most called penalties this season:
79 Procedure – Offside
33 Hold – Illegal Block Return
32 Holding – Illegal Block
Penalties called by position:
81 Defensive Backs / Linebackers
51 Offensive Linemen
46 Defensive Linemen
Jeremiah Masoli tied the CFL record with nine consecutive 300-yard passing games, matching Sam Etcheverry (1956) and Kent Austin (1991) who each made it to nine games in a row 62 and 27 years ago, respectively.
Winnipeg’s 36.0 points per game is the best mark since 1994 (36.2) and the second best in their entire history. It’s an increase of 17 per cent from a year ago, when they averaged 30.8 points per game.
This is the third consecutive year that the Blue Bombers have increased their scoring average from the year before.
Ottawa has six passing TDs this season; however, the Calgary Stampeders have allowed only one passing touchdown against.
This season, games are averaging 3.69 turnovers per game, slightly up from the average of 3.59 last season.
147 points have come off turnovers this season, which accounts for 19% of total scoring points.
William Powell leads the CFL in rushing with 355 yards averaging 118.3 yards per game. Powell is on pace for 2,130 yards in 2018, and his. pace is the fourth highest in CFL history.
Teams who won or tied the turnover battle this season are 15-1.
Impact of QB Sack: A team that gives up a sack on a drive have just a 5 per cent chance of scoring, or one TD in every 20 drives. A drive that does not conceive a sack jumps to a 19 per cent success rate, or one in every 5.4 drives.
The Toronto Argonauts have a league-low 14 penalties on the season. Montreal has a league-high 46.
Despite Calgary’s 3-0 start they are tied for seventh in red zone efficiency at 40 per cent. The CFL average is 58 per cent while Winnipeg leads the league with 81 per cent efficiency.
In 2018, there have been just 14 “big plays”, a pace that will result in just 71 big plays all year. In 2016 there were 107 long returns.
Greg Ellingson is currently riding a 30-game streak with at least one reception If Calgary has a lead after the first 15:00 they usually win. They are 1-0 in 2018, and 65-12 since 2011 when up after Q1.
Doug Flutie passed for 300-plus yards in 58.7 per cent of his starts (74 of 126 starts) while Trevor Harris has done so in 46.7 per cent of games he’s started (21 of 45). Reilly is at 43.9 per cent, Ray at 41.6 per cent and Bo Levi Mitchell is at 35.2 per cent.
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