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Argos face Blue Bombers in Grey Cup game today. Here’s what you need to know


The Toronto Argonauts are set to face off towards the two-time defending champion Winnipeg Blue Bombers in the Grey Cup game tonight in Regina.


The Argos are making their first look in the CFL’s largest game since they gained the cup in 2017.


Meanwhile, the Bombers have been essentially the most dominant workforce in Canadian soccer for the previous three seasons, successful the cup in 2019 and 2021, whereas posting a league-best 15-3 report this 12 months.


Here’s every thing you need to know in regards to the 109th Grey Cup.


THE ARGOS


This isn’t the primary time the Argos have come right into a Grey Cup game as underdogs dealing with a juggernaut. In truth, it is a state of affairs McLeod Bethel-Thompson has lived earlier than.


The Toronto quarterback had a front-row seat 5 years in the past when an upstart Argos squad registered an enormous Grey Cup upset.


Veteran Ricky Ray earned a report fourth CFL title win as a starter, guiding the Double Blue (9-9) to a shocking 27-24 win over the Calgary Stampeders (league-best 13-4-1) at Ottawa’s TD Place Stadium.


Now Bethel-Thompson may have an opportunity to make historical past repeat itself, this time as a starter.


The Argos quarterback led the CFL in passing (career-best 4,731 yards) and anchored the league’s second-ranked aerial assault (279.3 yards per game).


And he exorcised some playoff demons final weekend when he accomplished 19-of-27 passes for 299 yards and two touchdowns in main Toronto previous the Montreal Alouettes 34-27 in the East Division remaining.


Bethel-Thompson and the Argos misplaced to the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in the East Final at BMO area final 12 months after blowing a 12-0 lead in the primary half.


“Quarterbacks are measured by championships. I consider myself a good quarterback. I guess you could say I’m excited more than anything,” Bethel-Thompson informed reporters earlier this week in Regina.


“The reward for hard work is more hard work so I get to watch film and play a football game. That’s the most exciting part.”


The Argos may have some further offensive fire-power for the second straight week after veteran Canadian operating again Andrew Harris returned from what was thought to be a season-ending damage.


He rejoined the Argos’ lineup in time for final weekend’s win over Montreal, speeding for 42 yards on 9 carries whereas scoring his first landing of 2022.


Harris will complement East Division all-star A.J. Ouellette, who ran for 516 yard (5.3-yard common) throughout the common season. Against Montreal, the 2 helped Toronto rush for 101 yards on 23 carries (4.4-yard common).


Tonight’s game is private for Harris, who was a core member of the Blue Bombers championship groups of 2019 – when he was named Grey Cup MVP – and 2021 earlier than signing with the Argos in the low season.


“When I look at the full spectrum and everything that’s happened in the last five years to now, it’s amazing. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have this date, [this] Grey Cup circled in my mind,” stated Harris.


On the defensive aspect, Toronto may have to piece issues collectively with out Wynton McManis. The star linebacker, who had a team-high 88 tackles and was the Argos’ nominee for high defensive participant, sustained an upper-body damage in the East Division remaining.


The Argos have a troublesome process forward of them, however they’ve some historical past working in their favour. They’ve gained their final six Grey Cup appearances (between 1991-2017), their final championship loss coming in a 38-26 resolution to Edmonton in 1987 at B.C. Place Stadium.


“We’re playing in [the Grey Cup game], so I think we’ve made some positive strides as an organization these past few years. Last year we came up just short to play in this game, so I think we’re moving in the right direction,” head coach Ryan Dinwiddie informed reporters on Wednesday.


Already essentially the most profitable CFL franchise of all time, the Argos can add Grey Cup quantity 18 to the trophy case with a win.


THE BOMBERS


The Blue Bombers are a stellar 6-0 in the playoffs over the previous three seasons with veteran Zach Collaros underneath centre.


Collaros was as soon as once more a giant a part of Winnipeg’s success this season. The 34-year-old threw a CFL-best 37 landing passes and gained 15-of-17 common season begins.


“He’s the best quarterback in the league, he’s a tremendous leader and a tremendous competitor,” stated Bombers head coach Mike O’Shea on Wednesday.


And Collaros has a number of weapons at his disposal.


Rookie Dalton Schoen proved to be Collaros’ favorite goal, main the CFL in receiving yards (1,441) and touchdowns (16) whereas averaging a stellar 20.6 yards for every of his 70 receptions. Canadian Nic Demski had 10 TD grabs whereas Rasheed Bailey (63 catches, 729 yards, 9 TDs) was additionally an element in Winnipeg’s receiving corps.


But Winnipeg’s offence can do extra than simply throw the soccer. The Bombers have been the CFL’s second-ranked speeding workforce, averaging 113.5 yards per game.


The Bombers led the CFL in offensive TDs (58), passing TDs (44), passing effectivity (116.6), common per try (9.6 yards) and have been second in offensive scoring (28.2 factors per game). They additionally did job of defending Collaros, permitting the second-fewest sacks (29).


Collaros will look to lead his workforce to a 3rd straight Grey Cup victory, a feat not achieved in the CFL because the Eighties.


But he might need to play by some ache to get it completed. He suffered a minor ankle damage throughout the West Division Final that stored him out of Winnipeg’s Wednesday and Thursday practices.


THE 109th GREY CUP


This 109th Grey Cup is being performed tonight at Mosaic Stadium in Regina.


It’s the fourth time in Grey Cup historical past that the game is being performed in Saskatchewan’s capital.


The halftime present will function a trio of nation music stars; Canadian Josh Ross, Jordan Davis and Tyler Hubbard of Florida Georgia Line.


“Growing up, football was everything, and like so many young Canadians, the Grey Cup was the goal. Injuries led me on a different path, and now, music is my greatest passion and the stage is where I’m living my dreams,” Ross stated in a press launch earlier this month.


Most pundits favour the Bombers to win the game, however the two squads performed one another shut in the common season.


They matched-up simply as soon as, in week 4, when Winnipeg escaped BMO area with a 23-22 victory.


The 109th Grey Cup kicks off at 6 p.m. EST on TSN.



With recordsdata from The Canadian Press

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