Stamps' Cordarro Law proves his toughness
Corey Mace wasn’t surprised.
Sure, Cordarro Law had been on the ground writhing in serious pain only a couple minutes earlier.
When Law told his defensive line coach he was ready to get back in Saturday’s game against the Edmonton Eskimos, though, it was essentially what Mace expected.
Assuming Law was only dealing with pain and hadn’t suffered anything serious, Mace knew his star defensive end would be back in the game.
“He’s a wily vet,” Mace said. “He’s gonna tell you that the county where he comes from, all they do is tough, hard work. He’s been playing football for a long time and those are the guys where you get banged up and you get back on the field. He made a great play, got hurt, took what he needed time-wise to reassess, and he got back out there and made plays.”
Law sure did.
He finished Saturday’s 33-17 victory over the Stamps’ provincial rivals with four tackles and one sack, all of which came after he was forced to leave the game temporarily with a shoulder injury — other than the tackle on Greg Ellingson where he actually got hurt.
The Stamps absolutely needed him, too. The other two defensive ends the Stamps dressed in Edmonton were Da’Sean Downey and Anthony Johnson, both of whom joined the team well after training camp was over.
Law is the leader on the defensive line and with seven sacks so far this season is in the top-5 in the CFL.
Losing him to an injury would be a real blow for the Stamps. That’s why the second he realized his injury wasn’t too serious, he was right back on the field.
That’s just the way they build football players in Sumpter County, Alabama.
“I’m from a small county called Sumpter County, and Mace hung out there a couple times,” Law said. “A couple of his older friends that played ball know Mace, so he knows where I’m from. He knows the grind. Where I come from is a tough place.”
Law admitted that he initially thought he’d dislocated his shoulder while tackling Ellingson. After standing up and quickly regaining feeling and strength in his arm, though, he knew he’d be back in the game.
In the end, Law missed only one defensive play and was back on the field the next time the Eskimos gained possession and the Stamps needed a big stop.
On the very first play of that drive, it was Law who came up with the tackle and limited Eskimos running back C.J. Gable to only one yard.
Again, that was no surprise to Mace.
“Law and I had the opportunity to play together, so I know him more than most coaches would know their players,” Mace said. “All I need is a thumbs-up, that’s good enough for me.”
It would be hard to overstate just how much of an impact Law has had this season, and it’s worth remembering that he’s had a rough go the last couple years.
He missed the entire 2017 season after suffering a broken leg in pre-season and was limited to only nine starts last year.
His toughness has never been in question, but it was reasonable to assume the Stampeders would have to be careful with keeping him healthy this season.
That just hasn’t been the case, though, and there he was again on Tuesday morning, practising with his teammates as if nothing had happened.
“Everybody’s sore at this time of year, but I do think it’s nice to see the veteran guys showing up and working,” said Stamps head coach Dave Dickenson. “You know they’re not feeling that fresh. Eric (Rogers) is another guy. I never thought we’d get this many practises out of Eric.”
TIME TO RECOVER
No Shane Bergman.
No Derek Dennis.
No Nila Kasitati.
On the surface, the Stampeders offensive line appeared to be in serious trouble at Tuesday’s practice.
That’s three starting o-linemen, all sitting out. A recipe for a tough game against a very dangerous Hamilton Tiger-Cats defensive line this weekend, to be sure.
Fortunately, there may not be that much to worry about.
“All hurting, so we’ll see what we have,” said Stamps head coach Dave Dickenson. “All hopeful that they can play, though.”
It’s not uncommon for the Stampeders to give veterans a day off to rest-up when they need it, and after playing the Edmonton Eskimos twice in five days last week it’s entirely possible the Stamps o-linemen just needed a bit of extra time to recover.
Bergman missed Saturday’s game due to vertigo, though, so he’ll be closely watched all week.