Calgary Stampeders hurting at key positions including quarterback
Banged up at multiple positions, the Calgary Stampeders awaited word on one player in particular.
Quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell was scheduled to have magnetic resonance imaging on his throwing shoulder Tuesday.
The CFL’s Most Outstanding Player and Grey Cup MVP in 2018 did not finish Saturday’s 36-32 come-from-behind win over the B.C. Lions.
Mitchell left the game with three minutes to play when he injured his throwing arm on a pass. He clutched his chest under his right arm before leaving the game.
Mitchell joined his teammates on the practice field Tuesday, but did not throw a ball. Backup Nick Arbuckle took first-team reps.
The Stampeders overtook the Lions in the final two minutes Saturday on Arbuckle’s rushing touchdown and his touchdown and two-point convert passes to Ferric Rogers.
The Stampeders are in Regina on Saturday to face the Saskatchewan Roughriders.
“Bo can handle playing if it’s not a major injury,” Stampeders head coach Dave Dickenson said. “Got my fingers crossed.
“There’s definitely some pain. If you’re not sure, you need to go get the MRI. Just see the extent and go from there.”
Arbuckle went 9-for-9 in passing for 93 yards in relief of Mitchell. The 25-year-old out of Georgia State is in his second year with Calgary.
The six-foot-one, 213-pound pivot saw action in mostly short-yardage situations in his rookie season, but played more than a half in Week 5 when Mitchell was injured.
Arbuckle completed eight of 14 pass attempts for 84 yards and his first career touchdown throw in a 27-3 win over the Ottawa Redblacks.
If he starts Saturday in what is sure to be a raucous Mosaic Stadium in Regina, Arbuckle says he’ll be glad to get in a week’s prep.
“It’ll be good to actually having a full week of not just having the mental preparation, but the physical preparation as well of taking more than just two or three reps throughout the week,” Arbuckle said.
“I’ll feel more ready than I did this past week, no doubt.”
Calgary’s defensive line is severely dented just two games into the regular season.
Defensive end Ivan McLennan is the latest to go down suffering a dislocated knee and a broken hand on the same play Saturday.
Defensive tackle Junior Turner went on the six-game injured list after Week 1, while the Stampeders lost defensive end Folarin Orimolade to a long-term leg injury in a pre-season game.
The Stampeders traded the rights to a negotiation-list player to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers on Monday to get defensive lineman Patrick Choudja.
“We’re beat up inside,” Dickenson said. “I wanted a guy that’s been playing football.
“I know he’s a rookie, but I wanted a guy that’s been in a camp and is practising and ready to go.”
Running back Don Williams and receiver Juwan Brescacin didn’t practice Tuesday. Both were undergoing concussion protocols.
Rookie receiver Hergy Mayala, who was injured in warm up Saturday, and veteran halfback Brandon Smith were also absent.
The Stampeders recalled training camp receiver Colton Hunchak of Calgary and signed former Blue Bomber defensive back Abu Conteh on Tuesday to bring in more reinforcements.
“There were a lot of different people out there practising today,” Dickenson said. “A huge challenge going on the road. We need our best lineup so hopefully have more guys practising tomorrow.”
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