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Cody Fajardo on Playing Against Winnipeg’s Pass Rush, Proving People Right Who Believed in Him

Montreal Alouettes quarterback, Cody Fajardo questions at a media appearance on Saturday at Tim Hortons Field ahead of Grey Cup Sunday.

Grey Cup Preview: Montreal Alouettes vs Winnipeg Blue Bombers

Jackson Jeffcoat and Willie Jefferson have been a force for Winnipeg for quite some time. And looking back at the 2019 Western finals, Winnipeg was really putting on the pressure, and I thought you did a great job actually eluding the pressure and picking up positive yardage quite often. Would you say that it’s increasingly important to get rid of the ball quickly playing against Winnipeg?

“Yeah. I think, yes and no because their DBs do a really good job of sitting on certain routes and jumping routes because they know how good their defensive line is. And if a quarterback gets the ball out of their hands too quickly and you don’t see it, They jump in, interception, big play.”

“So there’s times when you’re gonna be asked to hold on the ball, and, we’re gonna hold up upfront. But, I know those guys fairly well. Those 2 guys competing with them over the last couple years, and, it’s always great to compete against those guys. Because like I said when I was talking about Bighill, you know, they’re 2 of the greatest pass rushers in our league right now.””

“And to be able to go and compete against them, it’s really what you want as a competitor, but, I’m excited for the opportunity to go out there and and compete against those guys. And all the you know, you talk about the 2019 western final, the 2021, western final. Like, there’s been some really good football games that I’ve played against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers that have gone down to the end.”

“That’s all you can ask for against that team is to have a chance to win in the fourth quarter because, if you look over the course of the last 4 years, not very many teams have been successful against them. And so that’s our goal, is to try to find a way, whether it’s offensively, defensively, special teams. Know, the goal is to win 2 out of 3 phases. If you can win 2 out of 3 phases, you should have a chance to win the football game. And so whatever combination of those 2 out of 3 it is, that’s what we wanna do in order to have a chance.”

Looking back on the season, because you were kind of cast off after it was a down year in Saskatchewan riddled with injuries, how validating has this season been now in the Grey Cup with a team that was 9th on the power rankings on

“Yeah. Absolutely. And that was something I think that bonded this team was your guys’ initial rankings and putting us 9th. Was something where all of us who is, like I said, just a bunch of new guys and a lot of turnover on the roster. The first thing we had in common was the hatred for you guys are picking us 9th, to be honest with you.”

“So that was the first thing that kind of bonded us, and we wanted to go out there and Prove that we are a better team than what people are talking about, but, the thing that that about last year, you know, I told you guys and some of you guys were in the room when I talked about the mental change I had this year, it wasn’t, go out there and prove all the naysayers wrong and prove all the people that doubted me wrong. It was go out there and prove all the people that believed in me, right.”

“And I think that clarity of mind and going out there and just the people who text me after games we’ve lost, because a lot of people will text me after we win. It’s a very select few that’ll text you after a loss, and those are the people that you realize that are riding with you through it all. And text me last year, after losing 7 straight and obviously not being in Sask. And so, those are the people you wanna go out there and you wanna play for. You wanna prove them right. So that’s been my mentality this year, and that’s why tomorrow, I wanna go out there and go out there with pride. And go out there for my family, for all the people that believed in me, and try to play my best game.”

Interviews ahead of the Grey Cup:
Winnipeg Blue Bombers
: K Sergio Castillo, DE Willie Jefferson, QB Dakota Prukop, RB Brady Oliveira
Montreal Alouettes: LB Tyrice Beverette, LB Reggie Stubblefield, DT Mustafa Johnson, K David Côté, DE Shawn Lemon, CB Kabion Ento

Reading Suggestions:
How Montreal Can Beat Winnipeg in the Grey Cup: Eight Keys to Victory
CFL Western Final Film Takeaways
CFL Eastern Final Film Takeaways

Other Articles:
BC Lions’ Tibo Debaillie Interview Ahead of West Division Finals
Reflecting on the CFL West Semi-Finals
Alouettes’ Jeshrun Antwi Interview Ahead of East Finals
East Semi-Finals Reflections
Alouettes’ Reggie Stubblefield Interview Ahead of East Semi-Finals
BC Lions’ Tibo Debaillie Ahead of CFL West Semi-Finals
Predicting the Rest of the CFL Season
CFL 2nd Period All-Star Team (Weeks 8-14)
CFL Midseason All-Star Team, Awards
First Period CFL and Divisional All-Stars
@JonathanClink on Twitter

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Jonathan Clink Reporter
Jonathan Clink joined CFL News Hub in early April of 2023. His primary responsibilities are covering the BC Lions and Montreal Alouettes. He self awarded himself the CFL Rookie Journalist of the Year in 2023 following the 2023 CFL season. He also proclaims himself to be a "really cool guy". He was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba and lived a large portion of his childhood in Northwest Ontario. He currently lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan and misses being being able to have 4 months of skating every winter. Clink has written over 240 articles for CFL News Hub. He was the publication's boots on the ground at the 2023 Grey Cup in Hamilton. Clink has always had an obsession for sport and has a background in other sports as well having played hockey all his life and soccer, basketball, and lacrosse in high school. As a young child he used to log his hockey statistics after every game which is either an indication that he was destined for the role or perhaps and indication that he is rather strange.
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