Esks' Stamps, Bowman near milestone
By GERRY MODDEJONGE, QMI Agency
|Edmonton's Fred Stamps celebrates a touchdown before finding out it was illegal during the Edmonton Eskimos game against the Toronto Argonauts at Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton on Friday, July 29, 2011. (CODIE MCLACHLAN/QMI Agency)
A pair of Eskimos receivers are coming up on the 1,000-yard milestone.
Well, more like a little over half a mile once converted, but nonetheless.
Slotbacks Fred Stamps and Adarius Bowman are on the verge of cresting four figures, which has become the measuring stick of a successful season at the position.
"For receivers, it's like that magical number," said Bowman, who is 214 yards away from the first 1,000-yard season of his four-year CFL career. "I've had a 900-yard season, but 1,000 just sounds a lot better."
Stamps leads the Eskimos with 911 receiving yards on the season, just 89 away from his third-consecutive 1,000 yards.
"When you become a receiver on a high-school, college or a professional level, that's your main goal," he said. "But the last few years, I've got 1,000 yards and at the end of the year I was home watching the Grey Cup.
"So a thousand yards would be cool. It'll come, as long as it comes with a victory.
Stamps led the league with 1,402 yards on 85 catches in 2009, and was at the top of the list this year before going down with a lower-abdominal injury in Week 6 that forced him to miss three games. He is currently sixth from the top.
A mid-season shoulder dislocation knocked him off pace in 2010.
"I just want to play a full season," said Stamps. "This year, I felt I came in in the best shape of my life.
"Nothing was bothering me and I had a weird accident this year. Kind of a freak accident."
Stamps was kicked in the groin by defensive back Jonathan Hefney the first time they played against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, an injury he played through, but required surgery following the game.
"I'm not trying to be cocky," Stamps said. "I just feel like I can do a lot of things if I can play a full season. Sky's the limit."
Meaning he might have to set his milestone at the actual mile mark: 1,760 yards in a season.
But more important than that to Stamps would be the opportunity to play through a full post-season. For as much as he's done in his five seasons in the CFL, Stamps said he won't feel a sense of accomplishment until he wins the big one.
"I haven't done anything," he said. "Individually, I feel like I accomplished a lot, but at the end of the day it's about winning.
"I just want to focus on one game at a time and, eventually, it will come."