Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Campbell Named Defensive Player of the Week

No sirs and madams, that is not a typo; a Hamilton Tiger-Cat player has been named the top defensive player.

OK, OK, that line would have made more sense had the Ti-Cats not thoroughly dismantled the Eskimos to the tune of 51-8, but given the angst over the defense since the season started, it is a minor miracle that any Tiger-Cat player would garner an award on that side of the ball. Oh, and the player who won the award was linebacker Brock Campbell.

Campbell was one of a number of Tiger-Cat players who had great games against Edmonton. Campbell finished with a game-high seven tackles and one sack, the first of his CFL career. This was just Campbell's third start and he has filled in admirably for the irreplaceable Markeith Knowlton. Campbell has not looked out of place in his first few games in the CFL playing one of the toughest positions on the defense.

I am surprised that Campbell's win wasn't accompanied by any other Tiger-Cat award winners, and I am also surprised that Campbell won the award himself. He had a great game and is a deserving winner, but I thought Dee Webb would have been a tremendous choice as well. Webb had the huge momentum-shifting blocked field goal that led to a touchdown and the interception return for a touchdown. While the blocked kick occurred on special teams, I thought combining the two could have been enough to warrant giving Webb the award for top defensive player. Chad Owens has won offensive player of the week based on combined yardage (see Labour Day 2012 and his 400-plus combined yards), so Webb winning defensive player could have happened.

And if defensive player was out of the question, Webb could have been named special teams player of the week. And if not Webb, then Bakari Grant for his big return touchdown was pretty deserving. Not taking anything away from what Tim Brown did, but there was really only one truly extraordinary special teams play and it didn't occur at BC Place.

I also thought that Henry Burris and his 418 passing yards would have been enough to see him named the week's top offensive player, but BC's Travis Lulay took that award home. Lulay went 24 for 40 for 390 yards, two touchdowns and one interception; Burris went 23 for 33 for 418 yards, three touchdowns and two interceptions. Maybe I'm biased, but Burris had more yards, more touchdowns (though he also had more interceptions), a better completion percentage and a better passer rating. Lulay had 42 rushing yards on two carries, but I still think Burris should have been the winner.

In any event, it was a great weekend for the Tiger-Cats and I'm glad at least one player was recognized for the team's overall great performance.

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