Hamilton must stop Richardson

Jamel Richardson. (BEN PELOSSE/QMI Agency)

Jamel Richardson. (BEN PELOSSE/QMI Agency)

FRANK ZICARELLI, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 7:10 PM ET

It was almost laughable how Jamel Richardson was overlooked in Montreal when the media was asked to vote on the team’s most outstanding player.

The Ticats are just hoping Richardson doesn’t get the last laugh.

If Richardson is able to dominate, the Ticats’ playoff run will end and the beginning of what promises to be the many off-season questions are certain to surface.

In the two games played in Montreal, both Als wins, Richardson hauled a combined 16 receptions for 220 yards and one touchdown.

In the two games played in Hamilton, both Ticat wins, last year’s most valuable player in the Grey Cup recorded 17 receptions for 292 yards and one touchdown, including one spectacular performance that saw Richardson make 10 catches for 199 yards.

Big and strong, quick and elusive, the best way to neutralize Richardson is by getting pressure on quarterback Anthony Calvillo.

Teams can force Calvillo into completing check downs, where running back Brandon Whitaker hauls in most of the catches in a defensive scheme that demands proper tackling in the open field.

Richardson is the kind of receiver who’ll make plays in the air, produce yards after the catch or force extra attention that leads to a teammate drawing single coverage.

“He’s going to get attention,” Hamilton head coach Marcel Bellefeuille said. “He deserves it.

“Right now, he’s the top receiver in the CFL.”

Whether it’s zone coverage, man, or making sure guys fly to his area when Richardson hauls in a pass, Hamilton must be physical and mix things up.

“We have to disrupt him,” Bellefeuille said.


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