May 2, 2024

Top of the Depth Chart: BC Lions

Timothy Atticus/CFL.ca

The BC Lions are on the fringe of doing something incredibly special, something they accomplished in 2011 something that forever puts you in the all-time memory of CFL fans across the country and globe.

Winning the Grey Cup at home.

Not since three straight such championships from 2011 to 2013 has it happened, but BC is primed to give it their best shot this season after building patiently and with intention over the last two seasons only to have their storybook ending thrashed by the Winnipeg Blue Bombers who no doubt have plans to do the same this year.

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The Lions roster is impressive, their depth and top end talent screams contender. Through what will be a trying season some names of note below will inevitably be lost to injury, but the sum of all the parts involved mean BC is here until further notice with a chance to reach legendary status on the podium at BC Place come late November.

OFFENCE

Receiver Running back Quarterback Fullback Offensive line
Keon Hatcher Taquan Mizzell Vernon Adams Jr. David Mackie* Jarell Broxton (LT)
Alexander Hollins William Stanback George Una* (LG)
Jevon Cottoy* Michael Couture* (C)
Justin McInnis* Sukh Chungh* (RG)
Kent Perkins (RT)

* denotes National
** denotes Global

QUARTERBACK

When Vernon Adams Jr. is your quarterback you always have a chance, the question facing BC is how to keep him clean throughout the season so he can be the best version of himself that we saw on home turf in the Western Semi-Final last season.

RUNNING BACK/FULLBACK

That could involve spreading the love a bit more in the running game as Offensive Coordinator Jordan Maksymic now has the smash and dash combination of Taquan Mizzell and former Adams’ Alouettes running mate William Stanback at his disposal, while David Mackie slots in at fullback.

RECEIVER

The Lions were the pass heaviest tendency team last year and with good reason, they had the tools to pull it off with Alexander Hollins and Keon Hatcher. Despite some long term playoff injuries those two will once again be threats for the receiving crown while big body Jevon Cottoy dominates the middle of the field and Justin McInnis has rounded into impressive form in Vancouver.

OFFENSIVE LINE

 

The offensive line is mostly status quo, although 2024 first round draft pick George Una should push for the chance to start at left guard immediately.

DEFENCE

Defensive line Linebacker Defensive back
Francis Bemiy* (DE) Boseko Lokombo* (WLB) Ciante Evans (CB)
Christian Covington* (DT) Ben Hladik* (MLB) Marcus Sayles (HB)
Josh Banks (DT) Emmanuel Rugamba (SLB) Adrian Greene* (S)
Pete Robertson (DE) T.J. Lee (HB)
Garry Peters (CB)

* denotes National
** denotes Global

DEFENSIVE LINE

Never has there been a more ‘win now’ announcement than the morning after draft day when the Lions announced they FINALLY were signing Christian Covington after an extensive NFL career. Alongside Josh Banks, prized acquisition Pete Robertson and fellow National Francis Bemiy who should jump into Mathieu Betts rush end position the Lions will get after every passer across the league.

LINEBACKER

The linebacking situation is – like most BC positional groups – flexible with injury and ratio concerns as Josh Woods could likely start in the middle but I’ve credited Ben Hladik with that role after a stellar 2023 season while Bo Lokombo continue to be an elite National backer.

The hybrid Sam linebacker role could fall to any number of long and athletic defensive backs on the roster who aren’t afraid to tackle the West’s best backs including BC thorn in the side Brady Oliveira.

DEFENSIVE BACK

The defensive backfield is again a bit banged up to start the season and highly talented when at their best. Adrian Greene running the show on the back end is the key to it all for me with my interest heightened in Siriman Bagayogo’s second season development as a corner on that wide side should Ciante Evans not take the role.

 

SPECIAL TEAMS

Kicker/Punter Long snapper Returner
Sean Whyte*/Stefan Flintoft Riley Pickett* Terry Williams

* denotes National
** denotes Global

Sean Whyte is pure money any day of the week, Stefan Flintoft continues to be one of the CFL’s best directional punters and Terry Williams can be as electric as any return man in the CFL.

With Mike Benevides at the helm of this unit and fuelled by a rabid pack of National specialists and cover men, the Lions downfall if it comes this year will surely have noting to do with the third phase of the game.

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