Sat, 23 Oct 2021

Dave Watford, Ticats take a crack at last-place Redblacks

Field Level Media
22 Sep 2021, 07:19 GMT+10

Quarterback Dave Watford will make his second straight start Wednesday night when the Hamilton Tiger-Cats visit the Ottawa Redblacks for a CFL East Division contest.

With fellow signal-callers Dane Evans (lower body) and Jeremiah Masoli (ribs) nursing injuries, Watford guided the Tiger-Cats (3-3) to a 23-17 victory Friday against the Calgary Stampeders.

Watford completed 19 of 22 passes for 149 yards and rushed for 35 yards on 10 carries, impressing coach Orlondo Steinauer enough to earn another start.

"Just poise, toughness, able to overcome some adversity," Steinauer said, per TSN.com. "It's not just about the plays called and the execution. There's just so much that goes into playing the toughest position on the football field that I was impressed with, outside of just the tangible numbers."

The QB position has also been in the spotlight for the Redblacks (1-4), who have scored the fewest points (80) and also allowed the most points (155) in the league.

Ottawa created a buzz by signing former Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Devlin Hodges during its bye week last week, but head coach Paul LaPolice encouraged fans to rein in their excitement.

"I get he played in the NFL and had some opportunities, but we have to make sure we lower our expectations," LaPolice told TSN Radio 1200 Ottawa on Monday. "He's not going to start on his first day, but he's a good young player who our personnel department has had an eye on for a long time."

Hodges, 25, started six games for the Steelers in place of injured Ben Roethlisberger in 2019, completing 62.5 percent of his passes for 1,063 yards with five touchdowns and eight interceptions.

He joins a struggling but well-rested Redblacks squad that has lost four straight games and has not played since a 45-13 loss to the BC Lions on Sept. 11.

After missing Ottawa's last game with a calf injury, wide receiver DeVonte Dedmon has been a full participant in practice this week. Running back Justin Davis (knee), offensive linemen Na'Ty Rodgers (knee) and Juwan Bushell-Beatty (hamstring) and defensive lineman Frank Beltre (hip, thumb) did not practice Monday.

For Hamilton, tight end Jake Burt (quad) and wideout Bralon Addison (illness) did not practice on Monday.

--Field Level Media

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