This isn’t the CFL with Doug Flutie, Matt Dunigan, Damon Allen, Tracy Ham and Danny McManus.
For proof, simply have a look at what transpired final week with the league’s quarterbacking panorama.
Within the span of some days, there have been dramatic developments – together with the league’s greatest participant this yr struggling a possible season-ending harm and a two-time CFL most excellent participant shedding his job.
Looking forward to 2023, the one quarterback fairly sure to be beginning for a similar staff is reigning CFL most excellent participant Zach Collaros of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.
Let’s have a look across the league at crucial place on the sphere.
Veteran Trevor Harris appears to have secured the No. 1 spot after changing Vernon Adams Jr. early within the season.
The 36-year-old performed his greatest recreation of the season final week, throwing for 382 yards and three touchdowns in a win over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.
It’s laborious to foresee Harris, who has had his ups and downs, because the long-term reply in Montreal. In a weak East Division, nonetheless, Harris may get the Alouettes to the Gray Cup this yr if he retains enjoying like he did final week.
The Redblacks can have their third beginning QB of the season this week when the well-travelled Nick Arbuckle goes in opposition to his previous staff, the Edmonton Elks.
Arbuckle began the opener this yr for the Elks earlier than being traded a number of weeks later to the Redblacks, who’re the league’s worst staff.
Ottawa misplaced its huge signing, Jeremiah Masoli, to a long-term leg harm final month. Caleb Evans was subsequent man up, however he struggled and was changed by Arbuckle final week in a loss to the visiting Elks.
Veteran McLeod Bethel-Thompson was the undisputed No. 1 coming into camp, however he’s beginning to really feel the warmth.
Bethel-Thompson has struggled on deep balls and the Argos have settled for too many subject targets.
Extremely-regarded rookie Chad Kelly is No. 2 on the depth chart. If Bethel-Thompson struggles this week in opposition to the Ticats, coach Ryan Dinwiddie may need a choice to make.
The Ticats’ two-headed QB monster was damaged up within the low season when Hamilton re-signed Dane Evans whereas letting Masoli go to free company.
Nevertheless, Evans hasn’t been nice this yr — and he hasn’t performed the final two weeks due to a shoulder harm.
Matthew Shiltz, a backup or third-stringer in Montreal for many of final yr, has began the final two video games and achieved properly. He additionally rotated with Evans for just a few video games earlier than that.
Evans is anticipated to be accessible on Friday in Toronto, so it is going to be attention-grabbing to see how coach Orlondo Steinauer makes use of his quarterbacks.
Winnipeg Blue Bombers
Now that B.C. Lions breakout star Nathan Rourke is out (extra on that later), Collaros is the odds-on favorite to repeat because the league’s most excellent participant.
The 33-year-old has had a profession renaissance since becoming a member of the Blue Bombers late within the 2019 season.
The Bombers are 26-2 when Collaros begins — profitable the previous two Gray Cups. Sufficient mentioned.
Roughriders coach Craig Dickenson raised eyebrows when he changed an ineffective Cody Fajardo with Mason Superb in a loss to the Lions final week.
Nevertheless, Dickenson mentioned he’s going again to Fajardo for the rematch in Vancouver on Friday.
Fajardo has been coping with a lingering knee harm all season and simply hasn’t performed at his prime degree, however was nonetheless annoyed with being benched.
With the Roughriders at 5-5 and internet hosting the Gray Cup, Fajardo most likely can’t afford one other tough outing if he needs to maintain his job.
Stampeders coach Dave Dickenson, like his brother Craig, changed his struggling starter (Bo Levi Mitchell) with the backup (Jake Maier) final week in Toronto.
Not like Saskatchewan, Calgary received — Maier was strong, however the Stamps defence was the most important cause the staff received.
The Stampeders are sticking with Maier on a brief week as they head into Winnipeg on Thursday.
It will likely be Maier’s fourth profession begin, however first when Mitchell, a two-time MOP, is wholesome.
The Elks have been the lone staff with out a agency No. 1 heading into the season, however Taylor Cornelius appears to have no less than grabbed a short lived maintain on the job.
A collarbone harm to Canadian Tre Ford opened the door for Cornelius, who has had his moments (although his numbers don’t scream celebrity) for Chris Jones’ rebuilding staff.
Cornelius can go an extended option to cementing his standing as the highest man if he can lead Edmonton to its first dwelling win since 2019 on Saturday in opposition to Ottawa.
In a serious disappointment, Rourke is out for no less than just a few months, and perhaps the remainder of the yr, after struggling a foot harm final week in opposition to Saskatchewan.
He will likely be present process surgical procedure for a Lisfranc sprain in his proper foot.
Even opposing coaches are down in regards to the information.
The 24-year-old Canadian was on tempo to set a number of information in his first season as a starter.
Rourke appeared like a certain wager to no less than get an NFL look subsequent season, however it is going to be attention-grabbing to see if he pushes that off for a yr to attempt to have a powerful full season north of the border.
One other Canadian, Michael O’Connor, is the brand new starter. When the Ottawa native begins Friday, it’ll mark the primary time three Canadians have began at quarterback in the identical season since 1968.
What we favored in Week 11
• Alouettes kicker David Cote hitting a 48-yard subject objective as time expired to present his staff a 29-28 win over visiting Hamilton. Cote missed a late 21-yarder earlier this yr in Toronto, costing his staff a possible win.
• Cornelius’ play within the second half in opposition to Ottawa. The Elks outscored the Redblacks 21-0 within the second half after trailing 12-9 on the break.
What we didn’t like in Week 11
• Redblacks coach Paul LaPolice not pulling Evans earlier in opposition to Edmonton. The Redblacks wanted a spark and waited too lengthy to attempt to get one.
• All of the accidents – Rourke, spectacular Stampeders rookie linebacker Titus Wall (foot), Argos defensive lineman Ja’Gared Davis (knee), Roughriders operating again Jamal Morrow (hand) and Blue Bombers receiver Greg Ellingson (hip) have been among the many gamers harm prior to now week.
Week 12 picks
Calgary Stampeders at Winnipeg Blue Bombers (-6.5), Thursday, 8:30 p.m. ET / 5:30 p.m. PT
The Blue Bombers are coming off the bye after shedding their first of the season the earlier week in additional time. The Stampeders simply performed on Saturday in Toronto and are switching quarterbacks. PICK: Winnipeg
Hamilton Tiger-Cats at Toronto Argonauts (-2.5), Friday, 7:30 p.m. ET / 4:30 p.m. PT
Third assembly of the month for the QEW rivals. Every staff has received at dwelling. PICK: Toronto
Saskatchewan Roughriders at B.C. Lions (-3.5), Friday, 10:30 p.m. ET / 7:30 p.m. PT
Second half of a home-and-home because the Lions attempt to preserve momentum with out Rourke. PICK: B.C.
Ottawa Redblacks at Edmonton Elks (-3.5), Saturday, 7 p.m. ET / 4 p.m. PT
One other home-and-home finale. Dwelling subject has been an obstacle for each these groups for the previous few years. PICK: Edmonton
General file: 25-18
(Odds from FanDuel as of Wednesday afternoon)
1. Winnipeg Blue Bombers (9-1, Final week: 1): Coach Mike O’Shea has achieved fantastic work the previous few seasons. The bye ought to assist O’Shea get his staff again on observe after its first loss.
2. BC Lions (8-1, Final week: 2): An impressive season is in jeopardy after Rourke’s harm. O’Connor has had restricted enjoying time.
3. Calgary Stampeders (6-3, Final week 3): Daring transfer by Dave Dickenson to start out Maier with Mitchell not in prime type. Powerful first take a look at for Maier in Winnipeg.
4. Montreal Alouettes (4-6, Final week: 7): Two dramatic wins in a row over Winnipeg and Hamilton. After a bye, the Als have three dwelling video games in a row – last-place Ottawa, Rourke-less B.C. and Hamilton.
5. Toronto Argonauts (4-5, Final week: 4): The Argos have been first within the East all season, however a loss to the Ticats would put that spot in peril heading into the Labour Day Traditional within the Hammer.
6. Saskatchewan Roughriders (5-5, Final week: 6): Quarterbacking issues proceed. Huge-time strain to beat B.C. with out Rourke because the Labour Day home-and-home with Winnipeg looms.
7. Hamilton Tiger-Cats (3-7, Final week: 7): One more late letdown in a loss in Montreal. The Ticats are 0-5 on the street heading into Toronto on Friday.
8. Edmonton Elks (3-7, Final week: 9): Want a home-and-home sweep of Ottawa to have a shot of constructing a second-half push for a playoff spot.
9. Ottawa Redblacks (1-8, Final week: 8): One more pitiful efficiency at dwelling in a loss to Edmonton. LaPolice’s job safety has been a sizzling matter within the Ottawa media.