Looking to win back-to-back games for the first time this season, the Toronto Argonauts will be starting McLeod Bethel-Thompson once again at quarterback.
When the Toronto Argonauts host the Ottawa Redblacks on Wednesday, they’ll have one thing on their mind. Piecing together consecutive wins and gain separation in the East Division.
The Argos have been dealing with injuries at the quarterback position with Nick Arbuckle dealing with a hamstring injury while McLeod Bethel-Thompson hurt his knee against the Montreal Alouettes. On Monday, head coach Ryan Dinwiddie named Bethel-Thompson the starter after getting cleared to play by the medical staff.
The 33-year-old will look to build off a strong performance against the Als where he threw for 210 yards and two touchdowns. While there is an opportunity for him to earn more starts down the road, he is ensuring his main focus is on the team’s results.
“I think it’s bigger than me,” he told reporters during a video conference Monday. “It’s about getting back-to-back wins.
“We haven’t done that yet this year. We need to make that step forward, we need to start expecting to be good, not finding out who we are in the first quarter but expecting to be good and proving it to ourselves. Doing that in back-to-back games I think is really important and that’s what I am looking forward to.”
This is the second of four straight games the Argos will play in their division and every victory provides a crucial step forward in trying to improve on their position in the standings. After they take on Ottawa, Toronto will play on the road against Hamilton and Montreal as they try to find some success on the road where they only have one win so far.
Of course, the focus is on the Redblacks who will be looking to build off their strong performance against the Edmonton Elks. It’s a team that has proven that they can make plays on special teams with star returner DeVonte Dedmon who has recorded a touchdown on punt returns in his last two games.
Defensively, this is a tough group to go against as they will try to give standout quarterback Caleb Evans a chance to get off to a strong start.
Toronto Argonauts getting some key players back from injury on defence
The Argos will welcome Shane Ray back after he suffered a broken finger in the first week of the season. Drake Nevis and Cordarro Law will make their season debuts but will be eased back into game action after spending the first six games on the injured list.
Jack Cassar will make his first CFL start at linebacker and said he was excited to get the opportunity with his hometown team. He will have his hands full with Ottawa getting a big boost from Evans who threw three touchdowns against Edmonton.
That depth at defence the Argos are getting back will be crucial as they will try to get some pressure on the Redblacks who will try to do most of their damage in the air. At the same time, Evans has shown that he isn’t afraid to get out of the pocket to make plays.
On offence, John White is sidelined which means D.J. Foster will get the start at running back and won’t have anyone backing him up as the team opted to start more players who can have an impact on special teams. Veteran Philip Blake will make his return from injury at left guard but the team will now be without Dariusz Bladek as Shane Richards will slide into his spot.
Do you think the Argos can get consecutive wins? What do they need to do to beat Ottawa? Let us know in the comments below.