Before the Argos started their 2022 season, Toronto was already slated to be without two of their top players for the first six weeks. All-Star SAM Chris Edwards (suspension) and All-CFL rookie C Peter Nicastro (Knee Surgery). But even a bye in week one didn’t prevent the Boatmen from adding more key figures to a growing inactive list. The Argonauts’ home opener has added more players to the team’s injured list.
Argos Dealing With A Multitude Of Injuries
Despite sitting out most of their regulars in the preseason and a week one bye. The Boatmen had 18 players missing in action to open the 2022 campaign. Toronto entered the regular season short-handed at several crucial spots. Ryan Dinwiddie and his staff had the challenge of deciding who their 45 active players would be in the opening game.
Because of all the missing pieces to the roster puzzle, the Argonauts were thin on the offensive line and defensive backfield in game one. They dressed only seven offensive linemen and just three reserves in the secondary. The Argos’ depth in both areas was tested immediately when RT Dejon Allen was ejected from the game. And replacement starting CB Robertson, Daniel, went down to a hamstring tear. Daniel, who battled several injuries in 2021, will miss six to eight weeks due to his latest setback.
Toronto dodged a bullet when RB Andrew Harris’s hamstring MRI results returned negative. However, he was limited in practice on Tuesday. Harris is expected to play. But the team has a whole new crop of injured players who could miss Saturday’s game at BC.
On Tuesday, the Argos released their first official practice/injury report for Week 3. And there are some concerning additions. Toronto has 19 players on their injury report, and in contrast, BC has nine, with only two players missing practice, defensive linemen Nathan Cherry (knee) and Obum Gwacham (foot).
|TORONTO ARGONAUTS||PRACTICE DAY|
|Player Name||Position||Injury||TUE||WED||THU||Game Status|
|Declan Cross||FB||Not Injury Related||DNP|
|DaVaris Daniels||WR||Not Injury Related||DNP|
|Fabion Foote||DL||Healthy Scratch||Full|
|Eli Mencer||LB||Healthy Scratch||Full|
|A.J. Ouellette||RB||Healthy Scratch||Full|
|Jachai Polite||DL||Healthy Scratch||Full|
|A.J. Richardson||WR||Healthy Scratch||Full|
LT Isiah Cage is still dealing with concussion issues and will likely not suit up against the Leos. Trevon Tate will get his second straight start on the blindside. Dejon Allen, last year’s starter, would be back at right tackle in that scenario.
FB Declan Cross, who was a big part of the Argos’ new power running scheme in the opener, missed practice on Tuesday. The good thing is that it wasn’t injury-related. The Boatmen only have one fullback on their active roster.
The Argos have been moving Brandon Banks all over the formation at WR. That’s mostly partly due to the injuries to veterans Eric Rogers and Juwan Brescasin. Banks has been practicing at the X position and played mainly in the slot against Montreal. Banks is wearing several hats in practice because DaVaris Daniels didn’t practice on Monday and Tuesday due to a non-injury-related situation. The reason for his absence has not been disclosed. Daniel’s return to practice will be pivotal in the next coming days.
Toronto’s main area of concern is their pass defence and secondary. Last week’s starter at SAM, Robert Priester, is not practicing because of a hamstring injury. To make matters worse, reserve DB Matt Boateng has also missed practice due to the same injury. DB DaShaun Amos (hip) is also limited this week.
The Argos staff might have to get creative and call up players from their practice roster to chip in on Saturday. Like rookie Eric Sutton. And someone like Josh Hagerty could assume a significant role in Week 3 at field half or maybe at the SAM linebacker spot.
Perhaps the most problematic aspect of the Argonauts’ practice report is the availability of DE Shane Ray. Injuries plagued him a season ago. And despite his fantastic debut in the opener, Ray came out of the game with a hamstring injury. It’s quite possible that Toronto could be without their emerging star pass rusher against the Lions’ lethal passing attack.
The Argos of 2022 look a lot like their 2021 counterpart. Winning close games on the field and having the most injured players in the league again.
Argonauts Release WR Earnest Edwards
The Argos announced the release of WR Earnest Edwards on Tuesday. Toronto’s overall depth at the position, the team’s injuries in other areas, and the emergence of players like Isiah Wright, AJ Richardson, and second-year CFL receiver Cam Phillips, made this move inevitable. Edwards is a versatile young vet who could land elsewhere as the season progresses.
Toronto Argonauts Icons Ricky Ray & Dick Thornton Inducted Into Canadian Football Hall Of Fame
The CFL announced on Tuesday the induction of several key figures in league history into the Canadian Football League Hall Of Fame 2022 Class.
Unsurprisingly, Quarterback Ricky Ray and linebacker Chip Cox are first-ballot Hall of Famers. They will be joined in the Player category by kicker Paul McCallum, fullback Tim Tindale, and Dick Thornton, who played on both sides of the ball. Inducted into the Builder category will be former CFL head coach Dave Ritchie, Calgary Colts’ founder, former general manager Keith Evans, and long-time CFL team executive Roy Shivers.
The Media Wing of the CFHOF will also welcome two new members – Glen Suitor and Ed Willes – in recognition of their distinguished service in providing coverage of Canadian football. They will be honoured at the Football Reporters of Canada’s annual brunch during Grey Cup Week in Regina.
Dick Thornton and Ricky Ray are CFL legends. Let alone Argos icons.
Ricky Ray had one of the most phenomenal careers of any QB in Canada, and he is considered royalty among Argonauts’ followers. And rightfully so, because very few players were as kingly as he was in the most critical moments.
Ray played 16 seasons, totaling 235 games (219 starts) and 14 playoff starts. He sits second in career completion percentage (68.2 percent, minimum 1,000 attempts), fifth in passing touchdowns (324), and fourth in passing yards (60,736) while holding the records for both Edmonton (40,531) and Toronto (20,205). He is a four-time Division All-Star and has been recognized as a CFL All-Star on three occasions.
He played in five Grey Cup championships, emerging victorious twice with Edmonton (2003 and 2005) and two more times with Toronto (2012 and 2017). His four Grey Cup victories as a starter still stand as a league record. Ray had a knack for delivering when it mattered most and sits first in touchdown passes (nine) and second in passing yards (1,512) in the big game.
The Argos released this official statement today about the induction of two of Double Blue’s all-time greatest players.
TORONTO – Two legendary Toronto Argonauts, QB Ricky Ray and DB Dick Thornton will be inducted into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame this year. The members of the class of 2022 will be officially inducted on September 16th at Tim Hortons Field.
Ray played 235 regular-season games over 16 CFL seasons, including 79 games with the Argonauts between 2012-2018. He had previously played in 156 games with Edmonton between 2002-2011. He retired in 2019 as the all-time leader in all major passing categories for both teams, the only player to hold this distinction.
Following a stellar career with Edmonton that included; Two Grey Cup championships in 2003 and 2005, a Grey Cup MVP after throwing for 359 yards and two touchdowns in 2005, a CFL All-Star nod in 2006, and the Edmonton’s Most Outstanding Player nominee five times, Ray was traded to the Argos on December 12, 2011.
In his first season in Double Blue, Ray led the team to the 100th Grey Cup Championship and the team’s first since 2004. His penultimate season in 2017 also culminated in a Grey Cup victory, including a record 100-yard touchdown pass in the snow in Ottawa. During his time in Toronto, he was named an East All-Star in 2013, 2014 (CFL All-Star both years as well), and 2017. In each of those three years, he was named the East Division’s Most Outstanding Player.
The native of Happy Camp, California, is the Argos leader in touchdown passes (114), passing yards (20,205), pass attempts (2,476), pass completions (1,757), and pass completion percentage (71.0). Ray also holds Argos records for most pass completions in a season (474), in a game (40), and consecutive completions (21). The 6’3 signal-caller led the CFL in passing yards four times (’06, ’08, ’09, and ’14), pass completions five times (’05, ’06, ’09, ’14, and ’17), and touchdown passes once (’14). Overall, Ray finished his CFL career fourth in passing yards (60,736), fifth in touchdowns (324), and is the only quarterback in league history to win four Grey Cups as a starter (‘03, ‘05, ’12, and ‘17).
Thornton played 149 games over 12 CFL seasons with Winnipeg (1961-1966) and Toronto (1967-1972) and was one of the last true two-way players playing both defensive back and quarterback, as well as receiver, punter, and running back. “Tricky Dick,” as he was known, was a three-time CFL All-Star (’63, ’65, ’71), five-time division All-Star (’62-’63, ’65, ’69, ’71), and two-time Grey Cup champion (’61-’62), while also appearing in one more for the Argos (’71).
The Chicago, Illinois native and Northwestern alum was traded to Toronto in 1967 and was one of the best defensive backs of his era, intercepting 43 passes and returning eight for touchdowns, the second-most all-time. He would score 18 touchdowns in four different ways (rushing, receiving, interception, and fumble returns) while passing for five more. When Thornton retired, he had the record for most defensive touchdowns scored in league history, which stood for 38 years. He was also the first player to return two interceptions for touchdowns in the same game.
Thornton passed away in 2014 in the Philippines, where he settled after retirement.