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Reflecting on the CFL West Semi-Finals BC 41, Calgary 30: Observations, Expanded Defensive Player Stats:

Observations reflecting on the West Semi-Finals which the BC Lions over the Calgary Stampeders by a score of 41 to 30 on November 4. Includes enhanced defensive stats such as QB hurries, run stops, and passes defended, as well as observations on what players did well on in various areas.

Alouettes East Finals Reading:
CFL Eastern Final: Montreal Alouettes (12-7) at Toronto Argonauts (16-2) Preview
Jeshrun Antwi of the Montreal Alouettes Interview Ahead of CFL East Division Finals
Reflecting on the CFL East Semi-Finals Montreal 27, Hamilton 12: Observations, Expanded Defensive Player Stats
Lions West Finals Reading:
CFL Western Final: BC Lions (13-6) at Winnipeg Blue Bombers (14-4) Preview
Tibo Debaillie of the BC Lions Interview Ahead of CFL West Division Finals Against Winnipeg
Reflecting on the CFL West Semi-Finals BC 41, Calgary 30: Observations, Expanded Defensive Player Stats:
Other Articles:
CFL Eastern Semi-Final Preview: Montreal Alouettes (11-7) vs Hamilton Tiger-Cats (8-10)
Reggie Stubblefield of the Alouettes Interview Ahead of CFL East Division Semi-Finals Against Hamilton
CFL Western Semi-Final: Preview BC Lions (12-6) vs Calgary Stampeders (6-12)
Tibo Debaillie of the BC Lions Interview Ahead of CFL West Division Semi-Finals Against Calgary
Montreal Alouettes Week 21 Extended Report
Mike Mitchell’s Final Power Rankings
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

Calgary Stampeders Observations

Marken Michel Had a Great Opening Drive

In the first play, Manny Rugamba wanted to switch off of Begelton to follow Marken Michel who was in motion pre-snap in play action but T.J. was in pursuit of covering Michel. This resulted in both players following Michel and Reggie Begelton getting open for a 43-yard gain.

The next play Michel was utilized off of pre-motion to get in position to make a key block on a 6-yard run.

On the third play of the drive, Michel beat Mike Jones in man coverage to get open for a 32-yard touchdown down the left sideline.

Jake Maier Played Well

Jake Maier completed 23 of his 34 passes for 304 yards and 2 touchdowns with 2 interceptions. Often this season Maier was not finding much success pushing the ball downfield and on his first 2 throws he had a 43-yard pass to Begelton and a 32-yard touchdown to Marken Michel.

The BC Lions’ pass rush was often putting pressure on Maier with Mathieu Betts having 8 hurries by my count yet Jake Maier did a good job weathering the pressure and maintaining an effective passing game against a strong passing defense.

Calgary’s Pass Rush Performed Well

Isaac Adeyemi-Berglund led the way in QB hurries with 7 for Calgary. Mike Rose and Julian Howsare both had 5 QB hurries and 5 other Stampeders’ defenders had 1 QB hurry. Despite Calgary only having 1 sack which came on a well-executed blitz from Cameron Judge, Calgary did a good job in their pass rush however it was to a large extent mitigated by Vernon Adams Jr. being elusive in the backfield.

Calgary Had a Great Game Stopping the Run

BC handed the ball off to their running back, Taquan Mizzell, 11 times and Calgary held him to only 28 yards rushing. Cameron Judge and Adarius Taylor both had 2 run stops and 3 other Stampeders players had a run stop as well.

Calgary’s Defensive Play

Defensive Line

Calgary’s defensive line did a good job puting pressure on Vernon Adams Jr. and winning a lot of their battles with BC’s offensive line, however this was often mitigated by Adam’s Jr. eluding the pressure scrambling to extend the play or picking up yards on the ground.

Isaac Adayemi-Berglund had the 2nd most QB hurries of any defensive player during the Semi-Finals weekend with 7. He also assisted with a run stop.

Mike Rose and Julian Howsare both had 5 QB hurries and 2 run stops. Derek Wiggan had a run stop and broke up a pass at the line.


Cameron Judge had Calgary’s lone sack as well as led the team in tackles with 8. He also had 2 run stops and a QB hurry.

Adarius Taylor had 6 tackles, 2 run stops, and assisted with another run stop. Taylor forced a fumble early in the third quarter resulting in a turnover.

Micah Awe had a QB hurry, assisted with a run stop, and provided tight coverage on a short incompletion in the third quarter.

Branden Dozier had 1 QB hurry in addition to his 4 tackles.

Defensive Backs

Michael Griffin had 5 tackles, a QB hurry, and a run stop.  Jonathan Moxey forced an incompletion in the first quarter thanks to a well time hit on a short pass.

BC Lions Observations

Vernon Adams Jr. Was Excellent

VA was throwing fast darts into tight windows and dropping the ball well over defenders. Adams Jr. completed 28 of his 39 passes for 413 yards and 2 touchdowns. He demonstrated his abilities to evade pressure as well use his legs to gain field position picking up the 54 rushing yards and 3 rushing touchdowns. Keon Hatcher also had a huge game catching 0 passes for 195 yards and a touchdown. Adams jr and Hatcher connected on some well time throws in which the ball was caught by Hatcher near the sideline just before going out of bounds much like we have seen throughout much of the season.

BC’s Pass Rush Was Effective

Mathieu Betts led the way with an astonishing 8 QB hurries. Marcus Moore, Josh Woods, Manny Rugamba, and Woody Baron all had 2 QB hurries. 5 other Lions players had 1 QB hurry. David Menard had the team’s only sack. With how often pressure was being put on Jake Maier it is surprising there were not more sacks. Marcus Moore did have a sack but it was negated due to him face masking on the play.

BC Needs It’s Run Game to Get Going

The Lions had a low night in terms of rushing output from their running back as Taquan Mizzell rushed 11 times for 28 yards (2.5 average). Calgary did a good job not allowing BC’s run blocking to create holes in the line which has been a problem for BC at times in getting their run game going.

Lions’ Run Defense Did It’s Job

It was not exactly a banner day for the Lions Run Defense but it got the job done. Ka’Deem Carey rushed 14 times for 75 yards. In the 4th quarter, Calgary was chasing the game and only handed the ball to Carey one time. Carey found success at times as he had a 16-yard run in the second quarter and a 20-yard run in the 3rd quarter. On Carey’s 12 other 12 rushes, he gained 39 yards averaging 3.25 yards per carry. BC’s run defense did enough to dissuade Calgary from utilizing the run game as they were chasing the game in the 4th quarter. Tibo Debaillie had a run stop resulting in a 7-yard loss in the first quarter and Manny Rugamba had a run stop for a loss of 1 yard in the 2nd quarter.

BC’s Defensive Play

Defensive Line

Mathieu Betts had an astonishing 8 QB hurries. Woody Baron and Marcus Moore both had 2 QB hurries as well David Menard had a sack, qb hurry and QB hit. Tibo Debaillie had a QB hurry.

Woody Baron, Tibo Debaillie, and Josh Banks all had a run stop.


Josh woods was extremely impactful in this match leading th team in tackles with 11. He also had 2 QB hurries, a run stop, 4 stops against short passing plays as well as another assisted stop, and broke up a pass in the 2nd quarter on a 2nd and long. Woods made a good tackle on Ka’Deem Carey holding him to 3 yards then on the next play made a quick tackle on Marken Michel keeping him short of the first down. Woods made a huge play closing in for a tackle for a loss in the third quarter on a 2nd and short. He had a tackle for a loss in the 4th quarter on a 1st and 15.

Ryder Varga had 3 tackles, 2 of which were run stops and a QB hurry. Manny Rugamba had 2 QB hurries and assisted with a run stop. Bo Lokombo also assisted with a run stop.

Defensive Backs

TJ Lee had a QB hurry and broke up a pass in the 4th quarter in addition to his 5 tackles.

Marcus Sayles came up with his first interception of the year on a deep throw on Calgary’s final play.

Garry Peters continute to be a reliable cornerback and did a good job stepping in front of the throw for an interception on a short slant route but the throw needed to be much earlier as by the time Maier was throwing it was a bad read. Peters also broke up a pass on a 2nd and 21 in the red zone in the 4th quarter and made a stop against the pass as well as assisted with another stop.

Mike Jones broke up a pass in the third quarter.

Adrian Greene made a stop against the pass.

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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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