After four straight victories, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers are now enjoying their first bye week, and one player should have a little extra bounce in their step when the team returns to practice next week to prepare for the BC Lions.
Blue Bombers defensive back DeAundre Alford is the CFL’s player of the week. Alford was chosen as the league’s top performer for week number seven for his heroic efforts in the Bombers’ victory over the Edmonton Elks.
The 23-year-old CFL rookie had his first two career interceptions, his first touchdown, and his first forced fumble in the 37-22 triumph.
Alford also recorded a pair of defensive tackles.
Alford only has seven games of CFL experience and has picked up a ton from his veteran teammates during film study in the first half of the season.
“I feel very comfortable,” said Alford after Saturday’s win. “I got guys in the secondary — Brandon Alexander, Nick Taylor, Mike Jones, and also Deatrick Nichols. We watch film together, we watch extra film, we stay after practice, just talk.
“We got a real good friendship, so they just played a big part in my success so far. I just got to keep getting better.”
“He’s a sponge, right,” head coach Mike O’Shea said after their last game. “He’s learning and he’s humble. He’s making sure that he knows he has to keep learning. And I do think, even in game, that that pick is not an accident.
“It’s him understanding and believing and trusting himself. And believing his eyes and film study.”
Alford is the fourth member of the Bombers to be awarded top performer of the week this season, joining running back Brady Oliveira, kicker Marc Liegghio and defensive back Brandon Alexander.
Hamilton Tiger-Cats linebacker Simoni Lawrence and the Lions Michael Reilly are the second and third stars of the week, respectively.
The Bombers’ next game is not until Friday, Oct. 1, when they travel to B.C. for the first of their two regular season meetings this year.