He didn’t see it coming, but the Hamilton Tiger-Cats sure saw Jerome Messam coming last Saturday.
And going, it turns out, as the Edmonton Eskimos fullback ran for 104 yards in a 28-10 win on the way to being named the CFL’s Canadian Player of the Week on Tuesday.
“I didn’t know what to expect as far as Player of the Week goes,” Messam said. “As far as my performance, I feel that’s pretty much what I expect of myself every week, so I wasn’t surprised about that.”
Messam topped the century mark, rushing on 17 carries for an average of 6.1 yards to go along with a pair of touchdowns.
“It feels good to be recognized for my performance and get Player of the Week,” Messam said. “I’m not going to let it get to me, though.
“I’m just going to continue to train hard and just try to produce the same kind of results every week.”
It was Messam’s second CFL weekly award after being named top Canadian on Sept. 11 with a pair of touchdowns in a 37-16 B.C. Lions’ win over the Toronto Argonauts.
“I got to start that Toronto game and it’s one of the two games that I got to get some carries last year,” said Messam, who also saw his workload increase with the Eskimos after platooning the running back position with fellow Canadian Calvin McCarty and import Daniel Porter.
But Porter was put on reserve in last Saturday’s game, while the two Canadians combined for 143 rushing yards.
“I don’t feel like the spotlight was on me. We shared time, Calvin and I,” said Messam, who broke for a longest rush of 32 yards.
Messam’s peformance shifted the spotlight from the former Lion’s troubles off the field that led to his suspension prior to getting picked up by the Eskimos in time for the regular season.
“It definitely feels good to get a little bit of positive light shone on me, you know?”