National Post CFL reporter Mark Masters looks back at the week that was:
LONG SNAPPING, LIFE SAVING
Calgary long snapper Randy Chevrier was at a food court across the street from his team’s hotel in Winnipeg last week when he heard a child choking. The three-year-old boy was having trouble swallowing a piece of pizza and the mother cried out for help. “I just grabbed him,” Chevrier told the Calgary Herald. “I just did a two-thrust Heimlich under his sternum. A big piece of pepperoni covered in cheese flew out of his mouth.” One day later, Chevrier helped the Stampeders beat the Bombers 21-20. “I really don’t want any attention for this,” Chevrier, a father of three, said. “It wasn’t that big of a deal.”
BOMBERS QBs FEELING BLUE
Winnipeg Blue Bombers quarterback Joey Elliott is expected to miss the rest of the season after tearing the ACL in his left knee during last week’s loss to Calgary. Elliott was hurt while trying to tackle defensive back Keon Raymond, who had recovered a fumble and appeared headed for the end zone. Raymond tripped and fell helmet first into Elliott’s leg. Starting quarterback Buck Pierce, pictured, left the game in the second half with a bruised left quadriceps muscle. His status for Saturday’s game in Toronto is uncertain. Alex Brink, who started one game last year, is the next quarterback on the team’s depth chart. The Bombers have failed to move the ball consistently this season regardless of who has been under centre. The team leads the league in punts (27).
ESKIMOS NOT GETTING CARRIED AWAY
Edmonton’s surprising start to the season continued on Saturday with another big win this time against the Lions. “Not every game is going to be wine and roses, where we lead from start to finish,” said offensive lineman Aaron Fiacconi. “But we will face that adversity. It will be new territory for us and we’ll have to see how this team reacts. We’re a young team and [adversity] is all part of maturing. And we’re maturing, game by game.” Edmonton, now 3-0, did not record its third win last season until Sept. 26.
DO THEY KNOW THE SEASON STARTED?
Anthony Calvillo’s pursuit of history was not compelling enough to draw a sellout crowd to Molson Stadium last Friday. A crowd of 24,698 watched the Alouettes beat up on the Toronto Argonauts 40-17 while Calvillo passed Damon Allen for the all-time passing touchdowns record. Montreal’s streak of 105 straight sellouts came to an end in Week 1 when they entertained the B.C. Lions. Before the 2009 season Molson Stadium was renovated to add an additional 5,000 seats increasing capacity to 25,012.
DOES MARSHALL HAVE A PLAN?
Rookie head coach Greg Marshall did not have many answers after Saskatchewan’s loss in Hamilton. “We got our … hats handed to us,” Marshall said. “I told the guys at halftime if they weren’t embarrassed by their performance in the first half, then they were in the wrong business. We have to do a better job of coaching and they have to do a better job of playing.” It is the first time Saskatchewan has opened 0-3 since 2000. Saskatchewan will be huge underdogs in Week 4 when they take the field in Montreal. “What’s the alternative, give up?” Marshall said. “There are a lot of areas we have to be better in. Right now we aren’t playing very well and we have to get that corrected in a hurry.”
BRUCE’S NAME GAME
Ticats receiver Arland Bruce created a stir last week by taping over the name on the back of his practice jersey with the word, “Reth.” When asked about the apparent name change, Bruce refused to give a straight answer only saying, “Runako Reth is actually the full name, but we’re not going to get into that.” The African name Runako Reth means handsome king. Bruce missed Saturday’s game with a lower-body injury. Hamilton’s leading receiver last year had only caught five passes through two games and expressed “shock” at not getting the ball more after a Week 2 loss at Edmonton. Bruce practised on Monday, but declined interview requests.
Hamilton Tiger-Cats receiver Maurice Mann cut his foot on a locker room door following Friday’s workout at Ivor Wynne Stadium. Mann, who leads Hamilton in receiving yards with 173, required stitches and was unable to play Saturday. Mann was replaced in the lineup by Chris Williams, who caught two touchdown passes to help lead Hamilton to its first win of the season. Mann sat out practice on Monday, but is expected to play on Friday in B.C.
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