Calvillo a humble superstar

KIRK PENTON, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:35 AM ET

Trying to get Anthony Calvillo to talk about how well he's playing this season is kind of like trying to intercept him.

It's not an easy task.

No CFL quarterback has performed better through the first third of the season than the Montreal Alouettes pivot, who also happens to be the league's reigning most outstanding player.

Calvillo has tossed seven touchdowns against just two interceptions. His 109.9 efficiency rating is the only one in triple digits. His 1,899 yards were the most by exactly 300 yards going into Week 7 action.

Just don't ask him to brag about it.

"Right now our whole team is playing well," Calvillo said yesterday afternoon in the basement of the team's Winnipeg hotel. "We're all benefiting from the success that our defence is having, what our special teams is doing.

"Right now, all three phases are playing (well). That's making all of us look good, and we want to try to continue that trend."

Calvillo has always been a deadly passer, but he's taken it up a notch since last year's appointment of head coach Marc Trestman, and this season he has completed more than 76% of his passes.

"Whenever you're in the same offence for the second year, you're only going to get better," Calvillo said.

The 36-year-old believes his perspective on life could also have a little something to do with his fine play of late.

His wife, Alexia, was diagnosed with cancer in 2007, and he missed the last part of the regular season and playoffs to be by her side. The fact he's been on fire since coming back from that trying experience might not be a coincidence.

"Once my wife got sick and she came back and got healthy and the fact that I was back on the football field, it was a lot different for me in terms of how I looked at football," Calvillo said.

"I didn't look at it like a life-and-death situation. It's a professional game that I play with a lot of pride, but deep down I know exactly what's really important.

"Unfortunately it took something like cancer to affect my family to really realize that. That's the way I kind of look at things now."

There was talk that Calvillo would pack it in at the end of this season, but his superb play over the past year and a half, not to mention the fact he's within striking distance of several of Damon Allen's CFL passing records, have some thinking he might stick around for a few more years.

Calvillo isn't looking that far ahead.

"I'm always going to sit back with my family at the end of the season and try to evaluate what my future's going to hold," he said. "But right now I'm just really enjoying it."

kirk.penton@sunmedia.ca


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