Rockstar QB Index: More than just a backup

The Rockstar QB Index is a weekly power ranking of quarterbacks across the CFL. The ranking reflects recent performance, historical value, statistical indicators, team success and overall on-field evaluation.

TORONTO — Dane Evans continues to prove he belongs as a CFL starting quarterback.

The Ticats’ pivot broke the 300-yard barrier in the first half vs. the Bombers, ultimately shredding a Winnipeg secondary for 359 yards, three touchdowns and an interception in a decisive road win.

Many questioned the Ticats’ championship aspirations after a season-ending injury to Jeremiah Masoli — but with a 6-2 record since then, it’s fair to say Evans has provided a much-needed answer.


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Elsewhere, Logan Kilgore came through in the clutch for the Eskimos, throwing the game-winning touchdown to end Edmonton’s four-game losing streak.

In Toronto, James Franklin struggled in his first start since Week 3, while Riders pivot Cody Fajardo found the end zone four times against his former team to defeat the Argos.

Finally, Matt Shiltz played well in his first start of 2019, but a late fumble by Antonio Pipkin cost the Alouettes in a last-minute loss to Mike Reilly and the BC Lions.

The final stretch has arrived. CFL.ca ranks the quarterbacks heading into Week 17:

BO LEVI MITCHELL CGY
THIS WEEK: 1 | LAST WEEK: 1

The bye week arrived at the right time for Bo Levi Mitchell and his injured receivers. Mitchell has thrown as many interceptions (5) as touchdowns since returning from the injured list, but that hasn’t stopped him from leading Calgary to four straight victories. Simply put, Bo knows how to win.

VERNON ADAMS JR. MTL
THIS WEEK: 2 | LAST WEEK: 2

Vernon Adams Jr. took his one-game suspension in stride, though the Als lost a close one. With five games left in the season, a strong finish would put Adams in the Most Outstanding Player conversation — an impressive accomplishment considering he started the year as a backup.

CODY FAJARDO SSK
THIS WEEK: 3 | LAST WEEK: 4

Cody Fajardo burned the Argos with his legs on Saturday, running often on second down while totaling 80 yards and a touchdown on the ground. The 27-year-old dual threat has caused defensive coordinators headaches all season, and now he’s got the Riders in a race for a division title.

MIKE REILLY BC
THIS WEEK: 4 | LAST WEEK: 3

Mike Reilly notched his sixth 300-yard passing game of the season on Saturday, leading the Lions to a back-and-forth win over Montreal. With three straight wins, the Lions’ newfound ability to keep Reilly standing — he’s been sacked just five times in four games — has factored into the equation.

DANE EVANS HAM
THIS WEEK: 5 | LAST WEEK: 5

The CFL’s hottest quarterback shows no sign of slowing down, averaging 374 yards per game and 10.5 yards per attempt in the month of September. Still just 25, Dane Evans is earning his way to a full-time starting gig in 2020. The question, of course, is whether or not it’ll be in Hamilton.

CHRIS STREVELER WPG
THIS WEEK: 6 | LAST WEEK: 6

Chris Streveler‘s game may not be tailored to playing from behind, but the Bombers’ pivot didn’t look out of place vs. the Ticats. The athletic sophomore is 2-3 since taking over for the injured Matt Nichols, averaging 7.3 yards per attempt with five touchdowns and five interceptions.

MATTHEW SHILTZ
THIS WEEK: 7 | LAST WEEK: NOT RANKED

What stood out most about Matt Shiltz’s game vs. BC was his athleticism. In addition to 177 passing yards on 10-of-19 passing, Shiltz broke off some impressive scrambles, eventually tallying five carries for 62 yards. The third-year pivot is an intriguing prospect and could get a bigger chance down the road.

JAMES FRANKLIN TOR
THIS WEEK: 8 | LAST WEEK: 8

James Franklin struggled against the Riders’ defence, taking six sacks while averaging just 6.9 yards per attempt in a 41-16 loss. It wasn’t the follow-up he envisioned after making a strong impression the week prior, which helped him take back the No. 1 job over McLeod Bethel-Thompson.

LOGAN KILGORE EDM
THIS WEEK: 9 | LAST WEEK: 9

After an uneven outing, Logan Kilgore saved his best for last, including a 51-yard hookup with DaVaris Daniels followed by the game winning touchdown to Tevaun Smith. The 29-year-old has the arm talent to succeed in the CFL, at least proving he’s a capable backup for Jason Maas and the Esks.

DOMINIQUE DAVIS OTT
THIS WEEK: 10 | LAST WEEK: NOT RANKED

Dominique Davis was effective in a platoon role, completing 65 per cent of his passes for a 9.3 yard average in a loss to the Eskimos. The REDBLACKS’ pivot was benched for Jonathon Jennings earlier this month, but may have earned another start when Ottawa comes off the bye week.

JONATHON JENNINGS OTT
THIS WEEK: 11 | LAST WEEK: 10

Jonathon Jennings was efficient in a Week 16 loss to the Eskimos, completing seven of eight passes for 58 yards. The first season in the nation’s capital has been a struggle for Jennings, who’s thrown three touchdowns and seven interceptions, but he’s still got a lot to play for in the coming month.

INJURED: ZACH COLLAROS TOR, MATT NICHOLS WPG, JEREMIAH MASOLI HAM, TREVOR HARRIS EDM

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