HomeDomesticEdmonton Elks focus on versatility on CFL draft night - Edmonton

Edmonton Elks focus on versatility on CFL draft night – Edmonton

Edmonton Elks head coach and general manager Chris Jones had 10 selections in the 2022 CFL Draft which began Tuesday evening.

The club’s first pick came in the first round at fourth overall when it selected Coastal Carolina defensive back-linebacker Enock Makonzo.

In the 2021 season, Makonzo recorded 71 total tackles and three forced fumbles in 13 games, earning a 2021 All-Sun Belt honourable mention.

Jones said Makonzo offers the versatility he is looking for in a defensive player.

“He can play safety, he can play SAM linebacker, and he can play WILL linebacker,” Jones said.

“He can play on three or four special teams, so he should be an extremely productive football player for us.”

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With the eighth overall pick, the Elks selected dynamic Waterloo quarterback Tre Ford. He played six games in 2021, recording 1,465 yards throwing for 10 touchdowns while adding 667 rushing yards and three touchdowns. He was named the Hec Crighton award winner in 2021 which is given to the most outstanding player in Canadian university football.

Ford didn’t perform in the 40-yard dash during the CFL combine, opting for his 4.4-second time in the 40 during his pro day at the University of Buffalo.

Jones said, like Makonzo, he sees plenty of versatility with Ford.

“He’s used to having the ball in his hands and he’s good once he gets out in space,” Jones said. “Ford is a tremendous competitor and you can tell he felt he should have went first overall.

“That’s what you want… a guy who is competitive.”

With a new rule in 2022 allowing two quarterbacks on the field at the same time, Jones said he sees Ford as a perfect fit for taking advantage of that rule.

“If you look at high school football in the (United) States, the best player on the team is often going to be the tailback or the quarterback,” he said. “Guys like that are used to having the ball in their hands.

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“The rule now, which allows you to have more than one quarterback on the field, allows you to be more creative at times.”

Ford is the first Canadian quarterback to be selected in the first round of the CFL Draft since 1980.

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