Zach Collaros and Eugene Lewis headline CFL Divisional Award winners – 3DownNation

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Photo courtesy: Dominick Gravel/Montreal Alouettes

The CFL announced the divisional award winners for Most Outstanding Player, Most Outstanding Defensive Player, Most Outstanding Canadian Player, Most Outstanding Offensive Lineman, Most Outstanding Rookie, Special Teams Player Most Outstanding and Coach of the Year.

The league announced its team’s nominees for the player awards last week, voted on by members of the media and head coaches across the league. The league-level winners will be announced Thursday, November 17 at the Conexus Arts Center in Regina at an event hosted by TSN’s Kate Beirness.

Photo courtesy: Scott Grant/

Most Outstanding Player

West Division – QB Zach Collaros, Winnipeg Blue Bombers
East Division — REC Eugene Lewis, Montreal Alouettes

Collaros had his first 4,000-yard passing season in 2022 and threw a career-high 37 touchdown passes, 12 more than the second-ranked quarterback. He went 15-2 as a starter and led Winnipeg to its second consecutive first-place finish in the West Division. This is the veteran’s second career MOP nomination and he is looking to become the fifth player in league history to win the award two years in a row.

Lewis set all-new career highs this season with 91 receptions for 1,303 yards and 10 touchdowns. He led his division with 22 catches for 20+ yards and had 30 receptions that converted second downs. This is the second year in a row that Montreal has produced the East Division MOP candidate after William Stanback in 2021.

Photo: Larry MacDougal/3DownNation. All rights reserved.

Best Defensive Player

West Division — DL Shawn Lemon, Calgary Stampeders
East Division — DL Lorenzo Mauldin IV, Ottawa Redblacks

Lemon has recorded 29 tackles, 14 sacks and five forced fumbles this season, tying a career high for sacks and tying for the league lead in forced fumbles. He was part of a Calgary defense that led the CFL in sacks and allowed the second-fewest rushing yards per game at 89.6. This is the 11-year veteran’s first nomination for this award.

Mauldin IV led the league with 17 sacks, becoming the first Ottawa player to do so since Angelo Snipes recorded a league-high 20 sacks in 1992. The former Hamilton Tiger-Cat hit a league-high in career with 43 defensive tackles and five tackles for loss. and two forced fumbles. He has played five games with multiple sacks this season.

Photo courtesy: Paul Yates/BC Lions

Most Outstanding Canadian

West Division — QB Nathan Rourke, BC Lions
East Division — REC Kurleigh Gittens Jr., Toronto Argonauts

Rourke led the league with six 300-yard passing games and three 400-yard passing games despite missing seven games due to a foot injury. He went 10-2 as a starter, posted a league-best 123.6 quarterback efficiency rating, and set a new CFL single-season pass completion record. (78.7%). The last quarterback to be nominated for this award was Gerry Dattilio in 1980.

Gittens Jr. led all Canadians with 81 catches for 1,101 receiving yards, scoring the most by a local receiver since Brad Sinopoli in 2018. The Ottawa native set a new career high with five touchdown receptions and converted 26 second tries this year. He led his team in receiving yards and led the CFL in yards after catch with 483.

Photo courtesy: Bob Butrym

Most Outstanding Offensive Lineman

West Division – LT Stanley Bryant, Winnipeg Blue Bombers
East Division — LG Brandon Revenberg, Hamilton Tiger-Cats

Bryant anchored an offensive line that allowed second-fewest sacks in the league with 28, while finishing first in offensive touchdowns (58) and second in rushing yards per game (110.5). The twelve-year-old veteran has now been nominated for the award five times, winning it in 2017, 2018 and 2021. He is the only player in CFL history to win the title of top offensive lineman more than two time.

Revenberg served as the backbone of a Hamilton attack that allowed the league’s fourth-fewest sacks (31) despite having the third-most attempted passes (549). Hamilton had the third-best assists in the league with receivers Tim White and Steven Dunbar Jr. both having 1,000-yard seasons. The native of Essex, Ontario. has now been nominated three times for this award.

Photo courtesy: Saskatchewan Roughriders

Best Special Teams Player

West Division — KR Mario Alford, Saskatchewan Roughriders
East Division — KR Chandler Worthy, Montreal Alouettes

Alford led the league with four kick return touchdowns, while recording 1,689 combined return yards. He is the eleventh player in league history with four or more kick return touchdowns in a single season and the fourth to score a kick return touchdown three different ways. He led the CFL in kickoff return average (min. 25 returns) with 25.8 yards and tied a league record with two kickoff return touchdowns.

Worthy averaged 24.0 yards on kickoff returns and tied a CFL record with two kickoff return touchdowns. The former Toronto Argonaut has recorded 10 big play punt returns, six punt returns over 30 yards and four kickoff returns over 40 yards. He finished third in the league with 1,862 all-purpose yards.

Photo courtesy: CFL

Most Outstanding Recruit

West Division — REC Dalton Schoen, Winnipeg Blue Bombers
East Division — REC Tyson Philpot, Montreal Alouettes

Schoen had 70 catches to lead the CFL in receiving yards (1,441), average yards per catch (20.6) and touchdown receptions (16). He is the third receiver to lead the league in distance as a rookie, after Curtis Marsh (2000) and David Williams (1988).

Philpot appeared in all 18 games and had 986 all-purpose yards and two touchdowns for the Alouettes. The Calgary native and first-round CFL draft pick caught 39 passes for 459 yards and a combined 511 yards on returns. He got a starting slotback role with three games left in the season.

Photo: Bob Butrym/3DownNation. All rights reserved.

Coach of the year

West Division — Mike O’Shea, Winnipeg Blue Bombers
East Division — Ryan Dinwiddie, Toronto Argonauts

O’Shea led the Blue Bombers to a league-best 15–3 record, setting a new franchise record for most wins in a regular season. The team is set to make it to a fourth consecutive Western Finals and will host the game back-to-back for the first time in six decades. The native of North Bay, Ontario. is the league’s longest-serving coach with a career record of 82-58 and is tied for fourteenth all-time in wins by a CFL head coach.

Dinwiddie guided the Argonauts to an 11-7 record to win the East Division crown for a second straight year. He improved his career record to 20-12 as Toronto went 6-3 on the road and 7-3 against divisional opponents. This is the second time the former CFL quarterback has been nominated for this award.

The CFL Awards Ceremony will also include the presentation of the Commissioner’s Award, the Jake Gaudaur Veterans Award, the Tom Pate Memorial Award, the Hugh Campbell Distinguished Leadership Award and the Jane Mawby Tribute Award.

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