LIVESTREAM PPV: CFL – Saskatchewan Roughriders @Toronto Argonaauts, Sept. 22, 7p (1a Sept 23, CET)

TORONTO — The Saskatchewan Roughriders and Toronto Argonauts are set for a rematch of last year’s Eastern Final on Saturday night at BMO Field.

It will also be the first time that Argos receiver Duron Carter faces his former team since being let go from the Riders last month.

News of Carter’s release sent shockwaves through the CFL. Riders head coach Chris Jones was vague when asked what led to the decision, simply stating that the team was heading in a different direction.cfL – sASKATCHEW

Carter played on both sides of the ball while in Riderville as a receiver and cornerback. The 27-year-old says that it gives his new team the upper hand.

“I’ve been in the ears of the DBs and the O-linemen and everybody,” Carter told “People are coming to ask me questions about certain tendencies and what they do. I know the coaches. I know the players. I’ve been there for a year and a half. That gives us kind of an advantage to know what they’re doing and be able to prepare for it.”

Argos head coach Marc Trestman made it clear that Carter would have to earn his playing time after signing with the Boatmen. The two-time CFL All-Star did not see any time on the field during the Labour Day Classic against the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, and was limited to just a few plays the following week.

It appears that Carter will take on an expanded role in his third game with the Argos.

“Coming from an offence where I wasn’t really getting targets and coming into this offence where they expect me to get targets and be that that guy, I love it,” said Carter. “I love the pressure. I love the responsibility… it’s still a work in progress and everyday I’m getting better.”

Another Rider-turned-Argo that will be donning the Double Blue on Saturday is linebacker Jeff Knox Jr. The 26-year-old signed with the Argos earlier this month after being released by the NFL’s Tennessee Titans.

Knox Jr. had an all-star season with the Riders in 2015 with 112 tackles, ranking second in the league.

The new Torontonian says he is looking forward to facing his former squad.

“I’ve got a lot of good friends on that team,” said Knox Jr. “They’re going to be fun to play against. I’m used to playing them in practice. It’s going to be fun to actually get to hit some of them.”

A big game from Carter and Knox may just be what the Argos need to shake them out of their current slump. The Boatmen have dropped three straight heading into their bye week, all against divisional opponents.

The team’s most recent loss came against the Ticats two weeks ago. Toronto failed to avenge a Labour Day loss, falling to Hamilton 36-25. Quarterback McLeod Bethel-Thompson threw for 295 yards with two touchdown tosses and one interception. Armanti Edwards had a team-high 112 receiving yards, while linebacker Bear Woods led the defence with nine tackles.

The well-rested Boatmen will look to right the ship when they take on the Riders.

Saskatchewan has emerged as a top threat in the league in recent weeks. After a slow start to the season, the Green and White are 4-1 since Carter’s departure.

The Ottawa REDBLACKS snapped the Riders’ four-game win streak last week with a 30-24 victory. Special teams were the highlight of the game for Saskatchewan. Marcus Thigpen returned the opening kickoff for a 97-yard touchdown to give the Riders and early lead. At the beginning of the second half, it was Kyran Moore that found the end zone on a 90-yard punt return major.

However, the Riders struggled to find a rhythm on offence. Quarterback Zach Collaros threw for only 162 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions in the losing effort.

The 30-year-old was clearly displeased when asked about the team’s performance.

“You watch the tape, you learn from it,” Collaros told “You try to get better as a result…I learned that we didn’t play well enough to win and we have to get better.”

The Riders and Argos last saw each other in Week 1 of the CFL season at new Mosaic Stadium. Saskatchewan took round one, defeating Toronto 27-19. Now, the series heads back to BMO, where the Riders’ season was cut short last year.

Defensive back Crezdon Butler says that the defeat still lingers in the minds of the players that were on the team in 2017.

“It’s definitely going to be a playoff atmosphere for us [at BMO], just because that’s where we ended our season last year.” said Butler. “It’s the next game, but the atmosphere is going to be a little bit different.”

The Riders know that the Argos are a much different team than what they saw in Week 1, specifically with the addition of Carter.

Jones says his team is prepared of the challenge of facing off against their former star receiver.

“We’ll probably have to put more than one [defender] on him to defend him,” said Jones. “He’s a great player and we’ve got our hands full regardless. With their receiving core, there’s a lot of really good players other than Duron.”

By The Numbers:

– Games in a row that the Argos have won when coming off of a bye week.

12 – Return touchdowns this season by the Riders. That represents 44 per cent of their team total, the most in the CFL.

13 – League-leading sacks by Riders defensive lineman Charleston Hughes.

416 – Net offence allowed per game by Toronto, ranked eighth in the league ahead of only Montreal. Toronto opponents have recorded over 400 yards in seven out of 11 games thus far.

The numbers show that neither the Argos nor Riders have reached their full potential on offence.

Toronto and Saskatchewan rank seventh (321.4) and eighth (318.6) in yards per game respectively entering Week 15. Bethel-Thompson will make his sixth straight start for the Argos on Saturday. The 30-year-old turned heads in his first CFL start, throwing four touchdown passes. Since then, he has yet to eclipse the 300-yard mark and has had only one other multi-touchdown game.

Collaros has yet to exceed the 300-yard mark this year, and has thrown six touchdowns along with seven interceptions in eight games.

Bethel-Thompson now has multiple games as a starter under his belt and a new offensive weapon to work with in Carter. Collaros has struggled with injuries this season, missing multiple games during the first half of the year with a concussion. He has started every game for the Riders since Week 8 and appears to be settling in with the offence, an opportunity he did not have at the beginning of the season.

One of these quarterbacks seems poised for a breakout performance.

– With files from

AFI, Yare Media and the CFL

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LIVE STREAM PPV: CFL – Saskatchewan Roughriders @Toronto Argonaauts, Sept. 22, 7p (1a Sept 23, CET)

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