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Running Back Weekly: CFL Week 10, 3 Stars of Week 9

William Stanback looks to be in the same form the last 2 weeks that he was in 2021 when he was a CFL All-Star. CFL running back rankings ahead of week 9 as well as the 3 Stars of the Week for week 8.

Stars of the Week:

1st Star: William Stanback (MTL)

19 carries for 106 yards, 5.6 yards per carry.

2nd Star: Dedrick Mills (CGY)

27 carries for 137 yards, 5.1 yards per carry, and 4 receptions for 18 yards.

3rd Star: James Butler (HAM)

9 carries for 51 yards, 5.7 yards per carry, 1 touchdown, and 8 receptions for 61 yards.

Other Articles:

Mike Mitchell’s Week 10 Power Rankings

Week 8 1st and 2nd Team

Week 9 QB Rankings, Week 9 RB Rankings, Week 9 WR Weekly

CFL First Period All-Star Team (Weeks 1-7)

@JonathanClink on Twitter

Previous Editions of RB Weekly:

Week 7 RB, Week 6 RB, Week 5 RB

Week 4 RB, Week 3 RB, Week 2 RB

1. A.J. Ouellette, Toronto Argonauts, Previous Ranking #RB1

A.J. Ouellette rushed 7 times for 32 yards (4.6 yards per carry) and also caught a pass for 12 yards. He appeared to sustain an injury in the first half but stayed in the game. Ouellette had an impressive run for 9 yards in the 2nd quarter in which he bounced to the right side after having nowhere to go and broke 2 tackles. He fought for extra yards on an 8-yard run pushing the play forward as Calgary’s Julian Howsare was bringing him to the ground in the 4th quarter.

2. Brady Oliveira, Winnipeg Blue Bombers, Previous Ranking #RB2

Brady Oliveira only had 9 carries for 67 yards (7.4 yards per carry) and 2 touchdowns. He had a 13-yard rush in the third quarter breaking some tackles and keeping the legs going and moving people forward. In the 4th quarter, he had a 27-yard run.

Oliveira was responsible for a strange-looking fumble on a 7-yard reception that BC’s Bo Lokombo picked up and ran back for a touchdown.

3. Dedrick Mills, Calgary Stampeders, Previous Ranking #RB4

I was critical of Calgary for not giving Dedrick Mills the ball more last week. This week they gave it to him a ton. He had 27 carries for 137 yards (5.1 average). He set the tone right from the first play with a really smart run pausing for a split second and then adjusting to the right as a hold opened up then dropped the shoulder and powered into Robertson Daniel ensuring he got an extra few yards for the first down on an 11 yard carry. He broke a tackle on a 13-yard carry on a 2nd and 5 in the 4th quarter for his longest play.

He had 2 runs in a row to open Calgary’s final drive of the game that were both similar looking finding an opening on the right side and running 10+ yards for consecutive first downs.

Not a lot of plays that they show on SportsCenter but Mills played a great game and was the focal point of Calgary’s offense to defeat an undefeated Toronto Argonauts team.

4. Taquan Mizzell, BC Lions, Previous Ranking #RB3

Taquan Mizzell was a bright spot during a dark day for BC. He rushed 10 times for 50 yards. He also caught 3 passes for 22 yards. His longest included a 15-yard gain in the first quarter and a 10-yarder in the 4th. He looked very good in a game in which Winnipeg was playing particularly well around the line.

5. William Stanback, Montreal Alouettes, Previous Ranking #RB5

William Stanback had a great game in which he consistently picked up yards after the initial contact. For the 2nd week in a row, Montreal gave him quite a few carries after using him relatively rarely through much of the season.

In week 9 he had his most productive game so far rushing 19 times for 106 yards (5.6 average). He looked much like the 2021 Stanback that was a CFL All-Star against Hamilton. Stanback was thundering down the middle and proved to be extremely difficult to stop. Stanback had a very impressive amount of plays keeping the legs moving and pushing Hamilton defenders forward for extra yards.

6. James Butler, Hamilton Tiger-Cats, Previous Ranking #RB8

Butler had a pretty good game and only had 2 rushes below 5 yards in Hamilton’s loss to Montreal. However, Hamilton abandoned the run and did not give him any carries in the fourth quarter despite him having a pretty productive game in which he rushed 9 times for 51 yards (5.7 average). He also caught 8 passes for 61 yards, 40 of which were YAC as a lot of them were screens. Butler did have a rare drop on a screen pass in the first quarter.

His first play was a good 7-yard yard down the middle hitting the hole at the line quickly as it opened.. He had many other good plays such as 10 minutes into the game in which he jumped over Montreal’s defensive back, Reggie Stubblefield, on his way to pick up a first down on a 2nd and 4 outside run. 

Butler looked like a beast on his longest run of 19 yards in the 2nd quarter in which he stiffed armed Montreal’s Mustafa Johnson and then broke an arm tackle from Johnson a few yards later and was tackled 5 yards after initial contact by J.R. Reed with a facemask.

7. Kevin Brown, Edmonton Elks, Previous Ranking #RB9

On the bye week in week 9.

8. Jamal Morrow, Saskatchewan Roughriders, Previous Ranking #RB6

Jamal Morrow’s longest run of the night was for 9 yards making a good read seeing there were no holes where the play was designed and bouncing outside to the left. Morrow’s touchdown came in the first quarter for 5 yards in which he lunged for the goal line with his legs wrapped up for the score. Ottawa’s defensive line often provided good run-stopping as Morrow rushed 13 times for 47 (3.6 average).

Morrow did miss picking up a block when he was in pass protection that resulted in his quarterback taking a fairly big hit from Ottawa’s defensive end Lorenzo Mauldin IV which is not fun for anyone.

9. Devonte Williams, Ottawa Redblacks, Previous Ranking #RB7

Devonte Williams was very limited against a Saskatchewan defensive line that played very well in week 9. Williams rushed 12 times for 33 yards for 2.8 yards per carry. His longest run was a 12-yard carry to the outside up the left. The next play he was stopped at the line. He also caught all 3 of his targets for 15 yards.

Jackson Bennett who was 2nd on the depth chart had 5 carries for 31 yards (6.2 average). Bennett had a key 4th quarter run for 13 yards setting up a 1st and goal. They went to him the next 2 plays as he rushed for 1 yard and then 5 yards being stopped at the 1-yard line before Ottawa kicked a field goal from the 1-yard line.

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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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