September 25, 2023

Landry’s 5 takeaways from Week 16

The Canadian Press

Hello, BC Lions. Don’t worry about all the talk this week being about the Argos and the Blue Bombers, blah blah blah. That one’s just about bragging rights, really, and maybe revenge for Winnipeg. Whatever.

Don’t get me wrong, Toronto versus Winnipeg is gonna be FUN. But you and I know (and probably the Bombers do too) the actual “biggest game of the regular season” – no matter what happens this week – is actually next week when Winnipeg pays you a visit, with first in the West on the line.

But that’s next week. And this week is this week. What about last week?

I’m glad you asked.

Here are the Week 16 takeaways.

» Argos sweep season series over Ticats
» Als snap four-game losing streak with win over Stamps
» Play CFL Pick ‘Em presented by Old Dutch
» Sign up and watch CFL games on CFL+ in the U.S. and Internationally


William Stanback’s game against the Calgary Stampeders might not have been what you’d call ultra-super-sensational but it was very, very good and if it signals what I think it signals, that is very, very good news for the Montreal Alouettes.

Stanback returned to the scene where he’d been badly injured at the beginning of the 2022 season – he admitted it was on his mind – and delivered a piston-pounding effort in Montreal’s oh so crucial victory in Calgary.

With 81 yards on 14 carries, Stanback turned in one of his best efforts of the season, suggesting rather brusquely that the Stanback we knew is around, still ready to push defenders from their toes to their heels, and occasionally right onto their arses.

That William Stanback? That’s the one that the Alouettes would love to have the rest of the way, consistently. If they get it, then Montreal’s offence will have the secret sauce they’ve been needing. The smile on quarterback Cody Fajardo’s face tells us so.

BONUS TAKEAWAY: Shawn Lemon sure is having fun these days.


A couple of Canadian receivers stole the show in Toronto’s win over Hamilton on Saturday night.

Argos’ receiver Dejon Brissett had shown a few pops of potential during this season, his third in the CFL. The previous two seasons, Brissett mostly kept his head down and manned his lane on special teams, only seeing the odd assignment on offence.

This year, he’s made a couple of highlight reel nabs, and with six catches for 98 yards and two touchdowns on Saturday night, he stated his case in being a potential go-to guy going forward.

And what can you say about Kiondre Smith’s night for Hamilton?

Ridoncudiculous, is what you say, particularly about a late-game reception that had him spying a tipped ball as he was spinning to the ground, snatching that ball in with one hand.

Smith had been making more and more noise over the last few weeks, and on Saturday night his first sonic boom was heard, with a total of 9 catches for 156 yards.

Brissett and Smith are quickly leaving the ‘emerging’ stage, these days.

Maybe they’ve left it entirely.

BONUS TAKEAWAY: It’s debatable as to which is more impressive. Wynton McManis’ on-field performance or his toothpick skills during post-game interviews.



I wouldn’t be able to say for certain when BC coach Rick Campbell started growing that beard of his, but it doesn’t take the sleuthing skills of Sherlock to surmise it was sometime after August 26th, when the Lions lost at home to the Hamilton Ticats.

“This beard is undefeated,” said Campbell to his players in a noisy locker room just after BC’s win in Edmonton.

Sure, the Lions’ offence, defence and special teams have played rather large roles in the team’s surge since that disappointing loss, with three wins in succession now. And in earning their tenth win of the campaign, the Lions showed that Edmonton quarterback Tre Ford – who ran free to his heart’s content over the previous few weeks – can, indeed, be corralled.

But Campbell – who surpassed his father Hugh with his 71st CFL win on Friday night (although Hugh amassed his totals in 96 games while his son has amassed his in 154) – knows where BC’s secret power really lies and that is with a beard that cannot lose. How long will it get?

BONUS TAKEAWAY: If you’ve been all ‘yeah, maybe,’ about Vernon Adams Jr. being a legit candidate for MOP, it is high time to stop ‘yeah, maybe-ing’ about that.


The Ottawa REDBLACKS, who’d been mired in a seven game losing streak, and who’d dramatically extended that streak with an incredible, come-from-ahead loss to BC in Week 15, got into a practice skirmish ahead of their game with Saskatchewan.

But if I’ve learned anything from the TV show “The Bear” it is that close knit family and friends can have hellacious, emotional clashes and then immediately get right back to the job at hand as though nothing ever happened.

Maybe a little in-house venting was precisely what the REDBLACKS needed in order to pull themselves together so that they could deliver a win over the Roughriders.

That, and a punishing running game, that is. With 22 rushes for 136 yards, Devonte Williams was cooking up a storm on Friday night.

“Thank you, chef,” say the Ottawa REDBLACKS.



Doing a royal wave after a walk-off winner made Edmonton Elks’ kicker Dean Faithfull a sensation a couple of weeks ago. Now, it seems, the 36-year-old rookie placekicker from Southampton, England is adding to his repertoire of English-themed celebrations.

After connecting on a field goal attempt against the BC Lions, Faithfull honoured the moment with an imaginary sip of tea, complete with a touch of class; an extended pinkie finger.

What’s next, Dean? I have a few suggestions: A little pantomime horsey ride, like the one in Monty Python’s Holy Grail. Or, still in that vein, stomp off the field doing a John Cleese ‘silly walk.’ Maybe wander the sideline in a deerstalker cap, pipe in mouth.

I’d love to see a Big Ben celly, if I’m honest. That one would have you bringing your hands together in a peak, high above your head, and yelling “Bong! Bong! Bong!”

Or perhaps stand perfectly still on the spot like a royal guardsman, for hours and hours. Ignore the flags.

AND FINALLY… How about a Highland Fling celebration, Dean? I know that’s Scottish, not English. I’d just like to see someone do it is all.

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