CFL Pass

Stampeders working magic, but … is Jon Cornish merely human after all?

The Calgary Stampeders just keep finding ways to win, though the off-season departures of Stanley Bryant and Brett Jones made Monday night’s injuries to *both* offensive tackles a serious test of their depth. Quinn Smith, who normally plays on the defensive side of the ball, actually had to move across and play on offense for the first time since his college days at Concordia – and he got the game ball for his efforts.

Despite the adversity, the Stamps showed why they’re the defending champs by squeaking out a 25-20 victory over the Argos.

Eric Rogers is the clear star of the team so far this season with 13 catches, 205 yards and two touchdowns to this point. After exploding onto the scene late last season (including a huge Grey Cup game with five catches for 108 yards), some are saying Rogers could be off to the NFL very soon.

The most curious stat for the Stampeders is the very “human” numbers put up by superstar running back Jon Cornish. He does have two touchdowns on the season but after three games, he has a pedestrian 4.7 yards per carry average and trails Tyrell Sutton for the league’s rushing lead by 93 yards. To put that average in perspective, his career mark is 6.8 YPC.

Is Jon Cornish now a mere mortal?

As the league’s only 1,000-yard rusher in 2014, the 30-year-old is pursuing his fourth consecutive rushing title while the Stamps themselves are still searching for an identity on offense. This is a team that averaged over 140 yards on the ground last season so this season’s average of 79.3 yards is definitely shocking.

Of course the sample size is small at this point, but I expect the numbers to improve once this new offensive line gets more time to gel as a unit. They haven’t had much of a chance to play to play with a lead, either, so rushing attempts have naturally been down this far into the season.

When things fall into place in Calgary, watch for one of those trademark Jon Cornish performances in which he puts up right around 200 yards. We all know it’s going to happen.

– written by Travis Currah