10 football players to keep an eye on during the 2021 CFL regular season
The current global situation caused a lot of disruptions globally and the CFL like many other sports leagues around the world had to be cancelled. However, the CFL is scheduled to return in November after the 2020 season was cancelled.
The 2021 campaign would begin on a Thursday night with the opening fixture between Winnipeg Blue Bombers and the Hamilton Tiger-Cats—in what would be a thrilling 14-game season. These two teams last met during the previous season with the Blue Bombers coming out victorious with a 33-12 victory to claim their first Grey Cup title since 1990.
With sports competition back, punters can now resume online sports betting on their favourite teams. After a year-long break, here are 10 players that would be worth watching this year.
1. Jordan Williams
As one of the very first players chosen during the 2020 draft, Williams never got the chance to show what he is made of after the 2020 CFL season got cancelled due to COVID-19. However, the six-foot, 232-pound linebacker for the BC Lions is worth keeping an eye on during the upcoming season.
2. Kamar Jorden
Jorden has had a bit of an unlucky career playing just one game since suffering a season-long knee injury midway through the 2018 season.
The six-foot-three-inches, 191-pound wide receiver plays for the Calgary Stampeders and recorded six touchdowns and 55 catches for 944 yards before sustaining an injury. With the departure of other wide receivers in the team, now is the time for Jorden to step up and bloom for his team.
3. Derel Walker
Standing at six-foot-two-inches tall, the 187-pound wide receiver for the Edmonton Elks is one player to keep an eye out for once the new season begins. In the 2015 CFL season, Walker was named the top rookie of the year and in the following season, he registered a career-high in touchdowns with ten and reception with 109 for 1,589 yards.
4. Cody Fajardo
During the 2019 season, Fajardo was named the league’s passing leader in his first season as a regular starter for the Saskatchewan Roughriders. The 29-year-old helped his teams finish on top of the Western Division standings after completing 338 out of 473 attempted passes for 4,302 yards and registering eight interceptions and 18 touchdowns.
5. Zach Collaros
Despite suffering a concussion during the start of the 2019 season, Collaros eventually led Winnipeg Blue Bombers to their first Grey Cup title in nearly three decades.
Collaros would be a regular starter for Winnipeg during the upcoming season and it would be worth keeping an eye out for the 219-pound, six-feet quarterback.
6. Andrew Harris
Harris ended the 2019 season with a huge bang leading the Bombers to their first Grey Cup title since 1990 and being named the MVP and top Canadian during the final.
While he has currently been battling with injuries of late, he is expected to be fit in time for the new season and if he registers 962 more yards, he will become the first-ever Canadian in the CFL to register 10,000 yards.
7. Charleston Hughes
Six-time CFL all-star Hughes would begin his 13th season with only his third team after joining the Toronto Argonauts as a free agent. The 37-year-old would begin the season with 130 career sacks, ranking him seventh in the all-time list.
8. Nick Arbuckle
Arbuckle joined Toronto Argonauts as a free agent. During his previous spell with Calgary Stampeders, he came into the limelight during the 2019 season, after regular quarterback starter Bo Levi Mitchell got injured.
Arbuckle registered four wins out of seven games, with a passing accuracy of 73 per cent, completing 174-of-238 passes for 2,103 yards.
9. Matt Nichols
Nichols was part of the Winnipeg team that recorded a 6-2 victory in 2019 before sustaining a season-ending injury. After leaving Winnipeg, he was signed by the Toronto Argonauts but unfortunately got released before playing any game due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 34-year-old quarterback has now signed with the Ottawa Redblacks, reuniting with the former offensive coordinator at Winnipeg and now head coach Paul LaPolice.
10. Brandon Banks
In 2019, Banks was the CFL’s top player and the first Ticat to claim that honour since 1998 when Danny McManus won it. Banks led the league with a club record 112 catches for 1,550 yards, making 13 touchdowns.
The electrifying five-foot-seven-inches, 155-pound speedster for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats is one of the many players to watch out for during the CFL’s season reboot.