Stamps' Reynolds making nomination a family affair

IAN BUSBY, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:14 PM ET

Joffrey Reynolds was planning a celebration for Nov. 26 anyway, so this is icing on his birthday cake.

Now, the Stampeders running back is hoping to bring up his family from Texas to share in what will be a career achievement: A nomination for CFL’s most outstanding player.

Reynolds had another one of his solid seasons as tailback for the Stamps, leading the CFL in yards from scrimmage and winning a second straight rushing title.

But in his sixth season, the Houston University product who grew up in Tyler, Tex., is starting to get recognized for what has been an impressive consistency to his game.

When he sits waiting for the announcement at the awards night in the Telus Convention Centre, Reynolds hopes to have his family supporting him, which will require a few airline tickets from Texas.

Those people are his mother, Lorraine Reynolds, uncle Al Jackson, 11-year-old daughter Kaycee and three-year-old son Jalen.

“Win, lose or draw, this will be something every one of them will be happy for,” Reynolds said Thursday. “I will be happy to have them up here. I will get to brag to them and show them off a bit.”

After his parents split when he was younger, Reynolds’ uncle helped raise him. When Reynolds was out of college, getting frustrated with the business and bouncing around the NFL, it was Jackson who pushed him into sticking with it.

He eventually found his way to Calgary, and now he’s second on the Stamps’ all-time list for rushing yardage.

“In the NFL, I wasn’t getting a shot to play running back, I was thinking about quitting and getting a real job,” Reynolds said. “My uncle looked at me like I was crazy. He said, ‘You are not ready to join the workforce yet.’ He’s been inspiring to me my whole career.

“My uncle was a father figure for me coming up. He followed me throughout my football career. He never says I have a good game.

“There was always something I could do better. He’s tough to please, but he’s been a motivator and somebody I looked up to coming up. I still feel that way now.”

Reynolds was a freshman in college when he became a father for the first time, and now that his daughter is going into middle school, Reynolds feels a bit old.

“It was something I wasn’t ready for at that point in my life,” Reynolds said. “Being here at 29, I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.

“To see her growing up and for me to be growing up with her is a thing I’m thankful for now. I’m glad she’s here. I get to see her become an young lady before I’m an old man.”

Reynolds won’t be without friends at the awards night either, but he hopes the entire team is preparing for a game during Grey Cup week.

Left tackle Ben Archibald was named the West Division most outstanding lineman Thursday, and he is opposing veteran Montreal Alouettes right guard Scott Flory for the league award.

It’s no surprise two parts of the Stampeders’ running game are up for league honours and the ground attack looks good for a long time.

Although Reynolds is hitting the turning point age of 30 for running backs, he isn’t about to consider this the peak of his career.

“I feel a lot better turning 30 than I did when I came into the league,” Reynolds said. “I feel good physically and mentally. I look at football as a game-to-game thing for everybody. An injury can happen at any time.

“In the off-season, I still see progress in my abilities, so I’m holding out on the retirement party.”


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