Points on the Flag: Week 9
It was a short week in the CFL but that doesn’t mean there was any less impressive Canadian performances. Here are the top 11, one for every point on the Canadian flag.
11. Nate Behar, SB, Edmonton Eskimos (Carleton)
Stats: 4 Receptions, 19 Yards, 1 Touchdown, 1 Defensive Tackle
The 2017 first rounder has played a quietly important role with the Eskimos all season, but made a handful of impressive plays against the Lions that really popped, including his first career touchdown. He made an impressive hustle play to track down a defender after a Mike Reilly interception which saved a touchdown as well.
10. Courtney Stephen, S, Hamilton Tiger Cats (Northern Illinois)
Stats: 5 Special Teams’ Tackles
Demoted from the starting role in favour of Mike Daly, Courtney Stephen has embraced his role as a special teams’ demon. His ridiculous five tackles in kick coverage against Montreal are deserving of high praise.
9. Kristian Matte, C, Montreal Alouettes (Concordia)
Stats: Blocked for 103 Yards Rushing, 1 Fumble Recovery, 1 Touchdown
Matte was solid all game on an Alouettes offensive line that played its best game of the year, but it was his hustle down field that allowed him to scoop up a Johnny Manziel fumble on the goal line and score a rare lineman touchdown.
8. Natey Adjei, SB, Edmonton Eskimos (Buffalo)
Stats: 3 Receptions, 22 Yards, 3 Special Teams’ Tackles
Adjei continues to be the type of Canadian talent teams look for. He made a couple of key catches for the Eskimos while simultaneously leading the team in special teams’ tackles.
7. Brad Sinopoli, SB, Ottawa Redblacks (Ottawa)
Stats: 8 Receptions, 83 Yards
It was a bit of an off week for Sinopoli and he would have been higher on this list had he not given up a key fumble.
6. Taylor Loffler, S, Winnipeg Blue Bombers (UBC)
Stats: 5 Defensive Tackles
Loffler put together his best sure tackling performance of the season and made a number of impressive stops in the open field.
5. Alex Mateas, C, Ottawa Redblacks (UConn)
Stats: Blocked for 114 Yards Rushing
Mateas has been Ottawa’s top lineman all year long and Saturday was no different, but what really stood out was his effort on the final drive. With the game on the line, Mateas’ key blocks allowed the Redblacks to run the ball down the Alouettes throats.
4. Nic Demski, SB, Winnipeg Blue Bombers (Manitoba)
Stats: 1 Carry, 4 Yards, 2 Receptions, 45 Yards, 1 Touchdown, 4 Kick Off Returns, 134 Yards
Demski is a true triple threat and while he was his usual productive self on offence, his chances in the return game were absolutely electric. His speed and quickness are unlike that of any other Canadian in the league.
3. Henoc Muamba, MLB, Montreal Alouettes (St. Francis Xavier)
Stats: 7 Defensive Tackles, 1 Fumble Recovery
Muamba played well in the middle all game long, filling gaps and jumping on loose footballs. The play of their Canadian linebackers continues to be a rare bright spot in Montreal.
2. Andrew Harris, RB, Winnipeg Blue Bombers (Vancouver Island Raiders)
Stats: 16 Carries, 82 Yards, 4 Receptions, 46 Yards, 1 Touchdown
It was simply another Andrew Harris week for the best runner in the league. The Winnipeg offence ran through him all game long.
1. Chris Ackie, WLB, Montreal Alouettes (Wilfrid Laurier)
Stats: 5 Defensive Tackles, 1 Forced Fumble, 1 Interception, 1 Defensive Touchdown
It was a breakout performance in a breakout season for Ackie. He made a textbook forced fumble and took a tipped ball all the way to the house for his first ever touchdown.