Player Surprises / Disappointments in 2012


Kevin Glenn - everyone knew he was serviceable, but he saved the Stamps season
Hugh Charles - 5.2 yard average and 6 TDs. Pretty good production considering he was aquired for a conditonal draft pick
Adam Bighill - toiled in anonimity last season behind Solomon Elimimian, but was so good for the first 3 months of the season, Solly couldn't get his job back when he returned
Tyron Brackenridge - this guy was just all over the field this year for the Riders, providing 77 tackles


Andy Fantuz - not terrible, but not the same player that left for a tryout with the Bears
Geroy Simon - a lot of nagging injuries but still, 2 touchdowns all season? Didn't see that coming
Jamel Richardson - normally at or near the top in receiving yards. Still got his 1,000 yards, but barely. Seemed to drop a lot of passes this year
Cory Boyd - from a 2011 East All-Star to a player who was released by two clubs in 2012

Good post rhymes with orange. Being a Lions fan I'll focus on the the Lions:

Pleasant surprises: E. Jackson. Bighill for sure. Return of Elimimian. QB Mike Reilly's performance

Disappointments: Simon of course [but not completely unexpected]. Bruce and his nasty concussion. Valli's over all performance. Mitchell's lack of discretion.

And I'll focus on the Ticats, as that's who I know the best.

Pleasant Surprises:

  • Daryl Stephenson - He has done a good job in his blocking role protecting Burris, and did a pretty good job when he was sent out as a receiver, only missing one thrown his way, from what I remember - and that was because it was thrown at his feet when his back was turned, trying to get out of the clutches of a linebacker. And he filled in well at runningback in the game Chevon Walker was injured.
  • Chevon Walker - The guy challenges Chris Williams for fastest player in the league. Definitely one, two, although I give CW the edge by a hair. Whenever Walker got the ball, anywhere in the field, you never knew if he would take it all the way. And he is quite a good blocker as well.
  • Torrey Davis, Terrence Moore - This pair, both signed mid-season, shored up the middle, finally providing the pressure that we desperately needed. Almost got us back into the playoffs.


  • Andy Fantuz - Expectations were incredibly high for him, and he struggled most of the season. The last game gave us a glimpse at what he could be, with 10 catches for 100-some-odd yards. A few games like that early next year, and he'll be forgiven.
  • Samuel Giguere - Ditto on the expectations. But he was also starting to show glimpses of his potential, finally starting to use his strength to run through players, and to use his speed to get around the rest. A few too many missed catches still.
  • The coaches - A lot of bonehead decisions throughout the year - non-challenges, bad challenges, not using Cobourne and Stala enough,.... And that late timeout on the last play of the last game? What was he thinking?

Honorable mention:

  • Chris Williams, Bakari Grant - Not really surprises, as they played very well in their rookie year. More just relieved that they didn't succumb to the sophomore jinx.

Disappointments: Rod Black
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Rod Black :cowboy: :roll: :rockin:

For the Riders:

Kory Sheets - Last on the depth chart coming into TC as a newcomer to the CFL. Arguably the Riders most potent weapon on Offense (Dressler of course being the other)
Xavier Fulton - Traded a 6th rounder for a starting LT who should have been West rookie nominee in my opinion
Tyrone Brackenridge - Played a little last year as a halfbalk, moved to cover LB this year and has been the best player on Defense since Kromah got hurt
Abraham Kromah - Before he got hurt was the Riders best defender. I think he will step it up in the playoffs
Ben Heenan - 1st overall pick who was expected to be the backup all year has started most games. took his lumps but has played very well.
Joe Lobendahn - Since brought in and placed at MLB has been a force. Big hitter who covers gaps magically. Run defense went way up after he was brought in

Receivers Way too many drops. Durant, and subsequently the Riders, would be having a much better season if the receivers could catch.
Odell Willis - While he has done some good things, he has not been the sack master that he has been in the past
Shomari Williams - Started at MLB as a ratio buster and has since been moved outside as he was just not able to do the job.

Gotta agree with you there Billy. At the start of the season, there were two Canadian MLBs that I thought had the potential to start and be very good at it. . . Henoc Muamba in Winnipeg and Shomari in Regina. Muamba lived up to my expectations; Shomari, sadly, didn't. Good thing for the Riders that Lobendahn was available.

Also for the Riders as another Surprise....

Sam Hurl: for a first year player with 17 takles on special teams is an accomplishment.

I am glad to see that someone else has recognized what Daryl Stephenson has done this year. Since coming out of Windsor rushing for over 5,000 yards he has been unable to find a niche on offense relagating him to only special teams. Although he rished for 5,000 yards at Windsor that was more do to his power and he is jsut not quick enough to hit the holes as a CFL Tailback. With Hamilton moving him to exclusively a FB this season the timing could not be more perfect. Before this season mostly FB were only used on sp teams or short yardage package but do to the success of Lavoi in Montreal and Cote in Calgary The FB is coming back into play in the CFL as more of a TE. Stephanson being a great athlete has found his niche. being 6'2" and about 240 he is a good size for TE so he an be part of the offense big and strong enough to block but also being athletic and skilled is also a good receiver.
Montreals Main offensive set is with TE lavoi 2 SB and 2 WR. Rob Cote has also played a lot at TE for Calgary and SASK started using double TE to help for protection but that evolved into Neil Hughes in a single TE set becoming a receiver as and not just a blocker.
Stephansons play enabled the Cats to trade Darcy Brown to Edmonton for DB Ricardo Colclough.
FB/TE are beginning to be more a part of regualr offensive sets opposed to simply just the 5 receiver sets. Lavoi, Cote, and Stephanson are among the top three.
It will be intersting next season to see how many teams use the TE set more with the success that it has brought to Montreal and Calgary. Stephanson really did not move into that spot until Cheveon Walker got hurt. before that he was mainly the back up tailback with cobourne not dressing. Once Walker got hurt and Cobourne began to dress and they added Rutley to the active roster is when Stephenson made the switch full time to FB/TE.

For Montreal:

Patrick Lavoie: Has made everyone forget Kerry Carter very quickly. Rookie out of CIS, just supposed to be an ST body this year. Instead, he's become an integral part of the offense, to the point where the coaches are not only lining him up at different positions (FB, TE, even receiver) but even designing plays for him: ... z2B0qHdwDL

Brandon London: Was on track for a monster season before his knee injury. Still managed to lead the league in YPC (19.6) despite only playing 12 games.

Chris Jennings: The third-string running back who came back to the Als in the final third of the season is turning out to be a power runner with tons of upside to his game. Victor Anderson may not get his job back when he's healthy.

Shea Emry: We always knew Shea was a good MLB. This year, he's become elite.

Alan-Michael Cash and Ventrell Jenkins: We're getting more sack production from our DTs than we've gotten in years, all from CFL newcomers.

Kyries Hebert: Who'd have thought that a 30-year-old former Ottawa Renegade who'd been out of football for a year would bounce back to become the league's hardest-hitting safety and ST tackler?


Jamel Richardson: Obviously not what anybody expected when the season started. He's been heating up again down the stretch, but J-Rich shouldn't have to wait until the last game of the year to hit 1000 yards, and all those drops are baffling.

Brian Bratton: Started hot but has been largely invisible since returning from his injury. Failed to crack 500 yards this year.

...Michael Bishop, surprised AND disappointed he didn't show up anywhere even after a certain poster guaranteed he would

Surprise: Seeing Adriano Belli back on the playing field. This is a good surprise though 'cause the CFL can always use another "character."

Disappointment: That Corey Boyd crashed so hard to earth. The story on the kid was that he came from a real troubled background but had somehow found his way because of sports. it seemed like here was another "rescue" for Michael Clemons. This was a feelgood story ... for a while.

I totally forgot.....

Player Surprise: Joe Kapp. Finally giving a thumping to Hamilton's Angelo Mosca after 49 years after Mosca took Fleming out of the game.

Player Disappointment: Joe Kapp. He didn't finish the job!!

I suppose technically he's no longer a player but does it ever really leave your blood?

Surprise - Anthony Calvillo, I had the Als picked to fight for a playoff spot. Calvillo is certainly not showing his age and played his usual consistent game throughout the season.

Disappointment - Shea Emry, Khalif Mitchell and Wally Buono and the BC Lions organization, the first 2 for thinking that they could just deny what they did and everyone would believe them and the latter 2 for standing up Mitchell and trying to blame everyone and everything but Mitchell for his actions.