July 14, 2008
JD up in the kitchen... While AJ cooks up sizzling CFL debut
By JONATHAN HUNTINGTON -- Sun Media
Jim Davis is making it a habit of getting into the quarterback's kitchen.
In his first CFL season, the defensive tackle leads the Edmonton Eskimos with three sacks through three regular-season games.
But in an earlier stage in his life, the six-foot-four lineman spent time in one of the best kitchens in Virginia.
While going to school at Virginia Tech, Davis had aspirations of being a top-notch cook.
"I always wanted to be a chef coming out of college," recalled Davis.
"I spent one summer in the kitchen (on an internship) at one of the premier culinary catering companies in the city of Richmond, Virginia, and I changed my mind very quickly because it is a lot of hard work.
"(It was) very tedious, very attention to detail.
"I said: Maybe the football thing might not be bad after all."
For the Eskimos, it's a good thing that happened.
If Davis had decided to stay on the path to becoming a chef instead of playing football, imagine the state of the Esks' defensive line without him this season.
According to the CFL head office to start the year, the Eskimos were only supposed to play one game with their 60th anniversary logo on their helmets.
But the club played their second game with the special logo last Thursday during the 47-28 win against Toronto.
It would be a wise move for the league to let the Eskimos keep the anniversary decal on their yellow helmets for the rest of the season.
If the team is told to take it off, the league would not score points in the public-relations game.
In the early balloting on Danny Maciocia's decision to pass on former Montreal running back Jarrett Payton, the Eskimos' head coach made the right move. Payton - the fifth-leading rusher in the CFL last year with 852 yards - hit the market as trade bait almost two weeks ago before being released 12 days ago. Instead of picking up Payton, Maciocia chose to bring CFL rookie AJ Harris back to the club 10 days ago -and watched him rumble for 89 yards in his regular-season debut in last Thursday's win against Toronto.
While Maciocia deserves applause for that running back decision, he's also fortunate Harris was still available after cutting him at the end of training camp. Another CFL team could have scooped him up for depth reasons.
PARTING SHOTS, Pt. 2:
Stick this is in the back of your mind: If the Eskimos get a on a roll in the first-half of the regular-season, the club's management will look very smart for lifting the local TV blackout for the first two regular-season home games. The Esks can only blackout five of nine home games this season. At the moment, Edmonton is only required to lift the blackout on two of the remaining seven games at Commonwealth Stadium this season. If the club is in legitimate contention for a playoff spot in September and October, fans will be forced to buy tickets to see the majority of the home games - if not all ... And one other thing: the Eskimos' marketing department couldn't have asked for better advertising in the last two home games beamed into this market on TSN. A thrilling last-minute victory over Calgary on July 3 followed by an entertaining win against Toronto last week will surely help ticket sales later this summer.