July 24, 2019

Checking Down: Injured Stampeders making progress

The Canadian Press

TORONTO — A trio of injured Stampeders appear to be making strides as Kamar Jorden, Romar Morris and Bo Levi Mitchell get closer to returning.

The Riders and Eskimos are making changes to their offensive line as Travis Bond and Dariusz Bladek are in line to start this week.

And could injured playmakers James Wilder Jr., C.J. Gable and DaVaris Daniels all miss this week’s contests?

The latest news and notes from Week 7 in this week’s Checking Down:

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Mike Reilly and Ryan Phillips are remaining members from the Lions’ 2011 Grey Cup team (The Canadian Press)

– The Lions have added former Rider and veteran defensive back Crezdon Butler to their secondary, the team has announced (CFL.ca).

– Many are comparing the Lions’ 1-5 start to their 2011 Grey Cup year, but the team knows digging out of an early hole won’t come easy (J.J. Adams, Vancouver Province).

– Mike Reilly wanted to keep playing, but should Lions head coach DeVone Claybrooks have removed his star pivot in a game that was already out of reach? (Jamie Nye, CJME).

– Despite a slow start to the season, Lions head coach DeVone Caybrooks believes he has all the pieces needed to start winning football games (CFL.ca).


C.J. Gable will miss Thursday’s contest vs. the Argos and will be replaced by Shaq Cooper (Walter Tychnowicz/CFL.ca)

– Veteran running back C.J. Gable will be sidelined for Thursday’s game vs. Toronto and will be replaced by sophomore Shaq Cooper (CFL.ca).

DaVaris Daniels and Forrest Hightower will also miss Thursday’s game, while Travis Bond moves into the starting lineup at right guard (CFL.ca).

– With his name about to go on the Eskimos wall of honour, retired quarterback Ricky Ray says he’s contemplating a future in coaching (Gerry Moddejonge, Edmonton Sun).

– Despite their injuries up front, the Eskimos are on pace to set a new CFL record for the fewest sacks allowed in 2019 (Gerry Moddejonge, Edmonton Sun).

– Though the Eskimos boast the CFL’s top-ranked offence, lack of finish has haunted them in both losses this season (TSN 1260).


The Stamps are hoping to have their franchise QB return to practice soon (The Canadian Press)

– Injured quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell was in Los Angeles this week to receive a cortisone shot for his shoulder, Dave Dickenson said. The Stamps’ head coach says he hopes Mitchell can return to practice soon (Mark Stephen, 770 CHQR).

– Ucambre Williams is expected to return this week for the Stamps, while SAM linebacker Jamar Wall’s status is less certain — both players are on the roster for Week 7 (Daniel Austin, Calgary Herald).

– Though his return isn’t imminent, injured receiver Kamar Jorden joined his teammates for some work ahead of practice this week (Daniel Austin, Calgary Herald).

– Hergy Mayala, the Stamps’ first round draft pick in 2019, is in line for a much bigger role on the offence, and it could come along quickly (Daniel Austin, Calgary Herald).

– Considered a question mark entering the year, the Stamps’ defensive backfield is in competition among the best groups in the CFL (Daniel Austin, Calgary Herald).


Despite being 35, Charleston Hughes is on pace for a career year with eight sacks already (Arthur Ward/CFL.ca)

– L.J. McCray was getting some work at corner in place of Solomon Means, though it’s unclear who will start for the Riders in Week 7 (Taylor Shire, Global).

– It appears the Riders could have some reinforcements on their offensive line, as Dariusz Bladek and Brendon LaBatte have returned to practice, though LaBatte will need more time (Claire Hanna, CTV Regina).

– Philip Blake has reportedly suffered a broken leg and has been placed on the Riders’ six-game injured list (Britton Gray, CJME).

– About to achieve yet another double-digit sack season, Charleston Hughes shows no sign of slowing down at age 35 (Matthew Cauz, CFL.ca).

– Former Riders GM Brendan Taman says a home-and-home sweep would be season-altering for both Saskatchewan and BC (Brendan Taman, Regina Leader-Post).


Nic Demski isn’t expected to miss any more time after sustaining an injury last week vs. Ottawa (The Canadian Press)

– In a conference call Tuesday, Ticats coach Orlondo Steinauer said the Bombers’ success is reflected in the professional approach of Head Coach Mike O’Shea. The two head coaches played together for several years before becoming coaches (Ed Tait, BlueBombers.com).

– Nic Demski and Jermarcus Hardrick are both back at practice for the Bombers, while Adam Bighill has a good chance to return to the lineup on defence though a decision has yet to be made (Bob Irving, CJOB).

– Things haven’t gone Chris Matthews’ way so far this year, but the veteran receiver is still believed to be in the Bombers’ plans moving forward (Ted Wyman, Winnipeg Sun).

– The Bombers have added kick returner Janarion Grant, which could indicate Charles Nelson’s injury will keep him out for a while (Darrin Bauming, TSN 1290).



– Ticats guard Darius Ciraco has returned to practice and appears to be fine after missing part of Tuesday’s sessions (Kyle Melo, TSN 1150).

– After leaving practice with an apparent back injury, Delvin Breaux has since returned to the field and is expected to play this week (Kyle Melo, TSN 1150).

– Offensive tackle Chris Van Zeyl has returned to practice this week for the Ticats, Maleek Irons continues to take first team reps at running back and Nick Shortill is filling in for suspended linebacker Simoni Lawrence (Marshall Ferguson, CFL.ca).

– Ticats head coach Orlondo Steinauer says his team is neither motivated nor intimidated by the Bombers’ 5-0 record ahead of their matchup on Friday (CFL.ca).


James Wilder Jr. is in danger of missing Thursday’s game vs. the Eskimos due to injury (Shannon Vizniowski/CFL.ca)

– James Wilder Jr. is expected to miss Thursday’s game vs. Edmonton, in which case he would be replaced by sophomore Brandon Burks (Frank Zicarelli, Toronto Sun).

– Receiver Armanti Edwards has missed some practice time this week but is expected to suit up against the Eskimos this week (Frank Zicarelli, Toronto Sun).

– As the Argos struggle to score points, Head Coach Corey Chamblin says the offence must consider some structural changes moving forward (Frank Zicarelli, Toronto Sun).


– Dominique Davis is still a week away from being ready, Rick Campbell says, meaning Jonathon Jennings will get a second straight start vs. the Stamps (CFL.ca via TSN 1200).

– Antonie Pruneau, Seth Coate and R.J. Harris will remain sidelined for the REDBLACKS in Week 7 when they take on the Stamps (Tim Baines, Ottawa Sun).

– Former Carleton defensive back Justin Howell has taken plenty of reps at safety this week for the REDBLACKS and could be in line to start (Tim Baines, Ottawa Sun).

– REDBLACKS QB Jonathon Jennings said he was ‘disgusted’ by what happened last week in Winnipeg as the team looks to bounce back (Tim Baines, Ottawa Sun).

– REDBLACKS long snapper Louis-Philippe Bourassa has been suspended for two games after testing positive for banned substances (CFL.ca).


Vernon Adams Jr. has quarterbacked the Alouettes to three consecutive wins (The Canadian Press)

– The Alouettes have signed veteran returner Shakeir Ryan and released Marcus Taylor, the team has announced (CFL.ca).

– Back on the Alouettes beat, renowned Montreal Gazette reporter Herb Zurkowsky joined TSN to discuss his cancer recovery along with the Als’ recent success (TSN 690).

– Montreal fullback Cristophe Normand is enjoying the opportunity to play for his home team, as well as the opportunity to block for league leading rusher William Stanback (TSN 690).

– In what’s quickly becoming the year of the backup, Vernon Adams Jr. has made the most of his opportunity as a starter (CFL.ca).