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Toronto Argonauts Week 18 News, Notes, And Roster Updates

The Toronto Argonauts are preparing to play their first game at home since August 26th. The 8-6 Argos will host the 10-4 B.C Lions at BMO Field this Saturday afternoon. The Boatmen are headed to the playoffs for the second straight season. However, their playoff positioning is more in doubt now than it was a week ago.

Toronto Argonauts Top Storylines

East Division Chase By The Numbers

EAST DIVISION STANDINGS

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1 Toronto x14860163353214-3-04-3-06-2-0
2 Montreal14770143633554-3-03-4-03-3-0

The 8-6 Toronto Argonauts are one game ahead of the 7-7 Montreal Alouettes in the East. But by the time, Monday rolls around. The two Eastern rivals could be tied for first place. The Als will be rooting for BC on Saturday. On the flip side, the Argos will be rooting for Ottawa as they play the Alouettes twice in a five-day span this coming Monday and then a quick rematch on Friday, October 14th.

When Toronto takes the field in Edmonton on Saturday, October 15th. They could be in trail mode a half-game behind Montreal if the Als handle their business twice against the three-win Redblacks. And the Argos’ fall victim to the Lions this weekend.

The Argos fans who have been dismissing Montreal for weeks have been doing so at their own potential peril. The Alouettes are one of the hottest teams in the CFL. They’ve won five of their last six games, including a victory over Winnipeg. And now, megastar RB William Stanback has been activated off their injury list.

As long as the Alouettes stayed within two games of Toronto before their Week 20 and 21 showdowns with Double Blue. Despite having a loss against the Argonauts against their ledger. Montreal had a puncher’s chance to win the East. But now, there’s a possibility that Montreal could be in the lead position when the back-to-back battles arrive.

Week 18 Injury Report/Multiple Lineup Changes

ARGONAUTS INJURY REPORT WEEK 18, DAY 3 – THURSDAY, OCTOBER 6, 2022

TORONTO – Find Toronto’s injury report for Week 18, Day 3.

TORONTO ARGONAUTSPractice Day 
Player NamePositionInjuryTUEWEDTHUGame Status
DaShaun AmosDBAnkleDNPDNPQUESTIONABLE
Juwan BrescacinWRHealthy ScratchFULLFULLLIMITEDQUESTIONABLE
Maurice CarnellDBKneeLIMITEDLIMITEDDNPQUESTIONABLE
Theren ChurchillOLHealthy ScratchFULLFULLFULL
Brandon CalverLBHamstringDNPDNPDNPQUESTIONABLE
Damonte CoxieWRFootDNPDNPDNPOUT
Davaris DanielsWRHipDNPDNPDNPQUESTIONABLE
Deionte KnightDLHealthy ScratchFULLFULLFULL
Josh HagertyDBHamstringFULLFULLFULL
Andrew HarrisRBChestDNPDNPDNPOUT
Trevor HoyteLBShoulderDNPFULLFULL
Wynton McManisLBKneeDNPDNPDNPOUT
Jamal PetersDBHeadFULLFULLFULL

The Toronto Argonauts could have as many as eight new starters in their lineup from last week’s position chart.

On the positive end, Jamal Peters is back practicing in full after missing Week 17 with a head injury and should be back in the starting lineup at CB, barring a setback.

Beyond Peters on the defensive side of the ball. DE Shane Ray is done for the season with a torn bicep. WLB Wynton McManis (Sprained MCL) will miss the next four weeks at the bare minimum. National players Robbie Smith and Trevor Hoyte are positioned to take Ray and McManis’s places in the starting lineup. The lone positive in this scenario is that inserting two national players into the starting mix will give the Argonauts staff some additional ratio flexibility.

The Argos have two players in the back end of their secondary who are questionable for Saturday’s game. Defensive halfback Maurice Carnell IV has been limited in practice with a knee injury. And DaShaun Amos is also iffy with an ankle ailment. Both players did not practice on Thursday at Lamport Stadium and are in jeopardy of missing Week 18.

The return of Jamal Peters allows Toronto to slide Shaq Richardson back inside after he played on the outside last week. So that covers one of the halfback slots, and the other would have to be filled by Robert Priester if both Carnell and Amos can’t suit up. The Argos defensive backfield depth will be tested with all the changes. Tigie Sankoh and practice roster player Caleb Holden could be called upon to play meaningful snaps. Robertson Daniel (six-game injured list) is MIA on the practice report this week.

Offensively, Toronto has two starters at receiver who could be missing in action this weekend.

DaVaris Daniels (hip) and Damonte Coxie (foot) haven’t practiced all week. Juwan Brescasin will likely reenter the starting lineup at slotback in place of Daniels. Brandon Banks, who split time at SB with the returning Cam Phillips, could see some time on the outside. Along with Canadian receivers Tommy Nield and Dejon Brissett.

OL Ryan Hunter saw considerable playing time in his CFL debut last week, supplanting rookie Gregor MacKellar at left guard in the second half against the Stamps. Toronto went to work quickly, assimilating Hunter into the lineup just days after signing him. Hunter had his ups and downs, but it’s likely that he will be starting in the interior sooner rather than later. The Argos have struggled immensely running the football, last in the CFL, and have yet to resolve their issues at left tackle. But the overall unit could improve if Hunter can get up to speed.

The Argos haven’t solved their kick return woes yet. Javon Leake appeared to be on the verge of returning off the injured list. But he hasn’t healed yet from a hamstring injury. Brandon Banks struggled in the role last week in Calgary. Jeremiah Haydel may get another opportunity as the primary returner this week.

Toronto Argonauts Transactions/Roster Movement

CFL teams have had a flurry of roster moves in the last few weeks. That’s because practice rosters have expanded by five for the tail end of the regular season. A roster rule that carries over in the new CBA. Thirty days after final NFL cuts, CFL teams are permitted to add on five additional players.

NFL cuts have made their way to the Argos. OL Ryan Hunter, WR Cyrus Holder, and WR Travell Harris are three players who were most recently on NFL rosters during the summer. The Argonauts have also added DL Jared Brinkman, DB Jonathan Edouard, and NFL veteran DE Damontre Moore in recent weeks. To make room for all these acquisitions, the Boatmen have parted ways with FB Joe Carbone, RB Adam Cofield, DE Julian McCleoud, and WR Isaiah Wright. OT Trevon Tate has been placed on season-ending IR, along with DE Shane Ray. LS Jake Reinhart has retired.

The CFL trade deadline has come and passed without Toronto making a move. But the team has done a lot of roster shuffling to offset that.

Heading into Week 17, the list below was the Argonauts’ official practice roster and injured list.

Toronto Argonauts C Peter Nicastro Return Tentatively Set For Home Finale

TORONTO, ON – OCTOBER 30: D.J. Foster #29 follows the blocking of Peter Nicastro #52 of the Toronto Argonauts on a run against the BC Lions at BMO Field on October 30, 2021, in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by John E. Sokolowski/Getty Images)

It’s been a very long road back for Argos Centre Peter Nicastro. The 2021 rookie sensation missed the playoffs last year due to a season-ending knee injury. But if things go as planned, Nicastro could finally be back right in time for this year’s postseason.

Nicastro, who is recovering from extensive knee surgery, has been rehabbing back in his hometown of Calgary. Last week, Argos head coach Ryan Dinwiddie and staff members met with Nicastro, and the plan is for him to rejoin the team in Toronto after the Argos Week 19 game in Edmonton.

The plan is for Nicastro to begin practicing with the team during that period. And the hope is that he will be able to return to the lineup for the October 29th season finale against the Alouettes.

Non Believers Of The Boatmen

The 149-year-old Toronto Argonauts are used to getting the cold shoulder in the twilight years of their existence. So it’s no surprise that Major League Baseball has scheduled the Blue Jays wildcard game with the Seattle Mariners in Toronto at 4 pm ET, directly against the Argos game this Saturday afternoon.

Disrespect or being disregarded is a common theme in the modern Argos era.

The late Dennis Green, in an infamous rant after his Arizona Cardinals lost a game in dubious fashion to Chicago, ranted and raved that “The Bears are who we thought they were.” Last weekend’s 29-2 loss to Calgary had many of the naysayers of the 2022 Toronto Argonauts echoing that same sentiment. The Argos are who they thought they were.

Despite their four-game win streak leading into Week 17. The non-believers expected the Argos to be outclassed by an upper echelon team from the West in Calgary. And that’s precisely what happened. Toronto went scoreless against the Stampeders, mustering only two singles in a sobering 29-2 loss.

Therefore, it’s no surprise this week that the overwhelming majority of experts are picking B.C. to walk into the Six and beat the Argonauts at BMO Field this weekend. Week 17 only reinforced their belief that the Boatmen are not a credible contender.

The critics will say that Toronto benefits from playing in a weak East. And the evidence of their genuine worth lies in the Argos’ 0-4 record this season against the top three teams in the West. No matter how Toronto landed at 0-4, the numbers don’t lie.

A year ago, the Argonauts had victories over Winnipeg and Calgary. Toronto went 4-2 against the eventual Grey Cup finalists, Bombers and Ti-Cats, in the regular season. It didn’t matter; the Argos’ success against the leagues best was seen as an anomaly or largely dismissed. That sentiment has carried over to 2022.

Chances are that even if Toronto rebounds from a demoralizing performance in Week 17 and triumphs over BC on Saturday. The Argos still won’t get their respect. After all, they are facing the Lions without Nathan Rourke. There’s a built-in excuse to discredit the Boatmen.

But if the Argonauts lose, it will add more fuel to the naysayers’ fire. And a loss by Toronto could do serious damage to Double Blue’s hopes of beating the best from the West on November 20th in Saskatchewan. After all, the only true way for Toronto to silence the non-believers is to get to the Grey Cup and win it all. Until then, they won’t be viewed as legitimate.

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