TORONTO — It’s Canada Day Weekend and there’s plenty of Canadian football on the horizon for fans across the country to enjoy.
Things get started on Thursday night as the BC Lions travel east to take on the Ottawa REDBLACKS. The Lions are coming off an impressive win over the Toronto Argonauts and will be hoping that continues against another East Division team this week. The REDBLACKS, on the other hand, are fresh off a bye and with an 0-2 record, they’ll be hungry to get their first win of the campaign.
Friday night is Canada Day and what better way to celebrate than with some CFL football? The Hamilton Tiger-Cats play host to the Edmonton Elks on Friday night as both teams have yet to tally a win this season. Something has to give for one of them under the lights at Tim Hortons Field.
The Montreal Alouettes and Saskatchewan Roughriders face each other for the second time in as many weeks on Saturday night. Fans at Mosaic Stadium will be excited to welcome their Riders home as Cody Fajardo and co. hope to get revenge after falling to the Als last weekend in Montreal.
And finally, the week ends on Monday as the Winnipeg Blue Bombers head to BMO Field to take on the Toronto Argonauts. Winnipeg sits tied at the top of the West Division with a 3-0 record while the Argos sit atop the East at 1-1. Who gets the win on a rare Monday night game?
- Hamilton will host Edmonton on Canada Day at Tim Hortons Field; it marks the first time they’ve hosted a game on Canada Day since 2016.
- Since 2010 there have been nine games played on Canada Day:
- The 2010 game between Montreal and Saskatchewan was voted the Game of the Decade in 2020. The game included:
- Third highest scoring regular-season game in CFL history with 105 points and highest-scoring game since 2000
- Highest-ever scoring season-opening game
- Tied for #1 all-time with 13 total touchdowns in a single game
- The game featured NINE TD passes
- Darian Durant threw for 5 TDs and 481 yards
- Anthony Calvillo 4 TDs and 386 yards
ROURKE THROUGH TWO
- BC’s Nathan Rourke now holds the highest two-game completion percentage by any quarterback in CFL history. He’s completed 65 of 74 (87.8 per cent). He surpassed Hall of Famer, Ricky Ray who completed 45 of 53 passes (84.9 per cent) in 2013.
- His 39 completions in Week 3 were the seventh-highest by any quarterback in CFL history.
- He has seven touchdown passes in his first two games, one short of the league record of eight – set by several players including Anthony Calvillo and Ron Lancaster.
- Among Canadian quarterbacks, last week’s 436 yards was the highest single game total of all-time.
HARRIS FACES FORMER TEAM
- Andrew Harris spent five seasons with the Blue and Gold making the playoffs each year and winning two Grey Cups.
- In his 74 games with Winnipeg, he recorded 5,402 yards rushing, scored 35 total touchdowns and racked up 7,986 yards from scrimmage.
- The last time Harris played against Winnipeg was October 10, 2015 at BC Place where Winnipeg defeated BC 29-26.
- Harris (9,775) needs 225 rushing yards to reach 10,000 yards in his career. He would become the sixth player to do so. He would join; Charles Roberts (10,285), Johnny Bright (10,909), Damon Allen (11,920), George Reed (16,116) and Mike Pringle (16,425)
- Harris became the fifth player in league history to record 15,000+ scrimmage yards. He trails Milt Stegall (15,209) by 169 yards for fourth all-time. The other players include; Geroy Simon (16,546), George Reed (18,888) and Mike Pringle (20,255)
- Winnipeg has allowed one touchdown drive on 41 possessions this season. Their current streak for not allowing a touchdown has reached 39 possessions in a row. In 2021 the longest streak was 44 also by Winnipeg.
- Winnipeg has allowed fewer than 20 points in 13 of 17 games since the start of 2021 – They are 12-1 in those games
- Winnipeg has won the turnover battle outright in 14 of 17 games since the start of 2021 – they are 13-1 in those games.
- The team has only allowed 12 points in the second half, no touchdowns given up and only six points allowed in the fourth quarter (two field goals).
- It’s the first time three teams are undefeated following Week 3 since 2004.
- BC Lions through two games have scored 103 points breaking their own previous high of 84 set in 1987. They’ve tied the league record set by Toronto by 1992. That Toronto team started with 42 and scored 61 points in their next game.
- Keys to winning: Only the Argos have won when committing more turnovers than the opposing team. The turnover battle winner is 10-1 in games this season.
- Teams who have had the better average field position or the better second down conversions have gone 9-3 in each case.
- This season there has been 13 challenges with teams winning their challenge three times (23 per cent)
- A Chris Jones led team has never started 0-4.
- Montreal earned the East Division it’s first win over the West after their 37-13 victory over Saskatchewan. The Alouettes will be looking to sweep the season series against the Roughriders for the first time since 2016.
- Dane Evans is 2-0 in his career against Edmonton while Nick Arbuckle is 1-2 versus Hamilton.
- The Lions possessed the football for 40:18 against the Argos last week, the highest time of possession the league has on record since 1996. Lions are averaging 37:29 after two games.
- Manny Arceneaux caught seven passes for 100 yards last week against the Stampeders. It marked the first-time in 1,437 days that Arceneaux recorded a 100-yard receiving game (July 20, 2018). He has 12 receptions for 204 yards and a touchdown this year.
- Ottawa’s Jeremiah Masoli has passed 300+ yards in each of his two games this season, both games against the league’s best defence.
- Masoli’s favourite target, Jaelon Acklin has the highest average of receiving yards this season with 110 per game. Despite only playing two games, he is fourth in the league with 220 receiving yards.
- Only two teams are averaging more than 5.0 yards per carry this season: BC 6.5 yards per carry and Montreal with 5.5 yards.
- Toronto went 1-1 last season against Winnipeg, winning their home game against the champs 30-23.
- Saskatchewan’s Pete Robertson leads the league with five sacks through three games and has registered at least one per week.
- Tiger-Cats’ linebacker Jovan Santos-Knox leads the league with 20 tackles and defensive plays with 25.