Game Breakers

JIM BENDER -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 10:09 AM ET

The last time the Montreal Alouettes invaded Winnipeg, the Larks rode the arm of quarterback Anthony Calvillo to a 44-16 CFL victory. And Blue Bomber head coach Doug Berry and defensive co-ordinator Greg Marshall offered Montreal mentor Don Matthews a one-fingered salute. Or maybe they were just acknowledging the Larks as No. 1.

But this time the Birds fly into town with their undefeated string long since broken. However, they still boast some of the game's best game-breakers. So, here are the top three Als who have been a Winnipeg nemesis countered by the best three game-breakers against Montreal from the Blue Bombers' side.

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MILT STEGALL

The 6-foot, 185-pound slotback was held to three catches for 31 yards in the 44-16 loss to Montreal but opened the season with five receptions for 61 yards in the 27-17 loss to the Als in Montreal.

Last year, Stegall caught three passes for 60 yards and one touchdown in Winnipeg's 51-46 victory over Montreal and the veteran, who holds the CFL record for most TD receptions, followed that up with two catches for 51 yards and a TD in the 42-23 loss.

CHARLES ROBERTS

The 5-foot-6, 170-pound scatback has not had a lot of success in Montreal over the years but he did open the season by rushing for 71 yards on only 12 carries. He added another 39 yards on three receptions. In the second game, Roberts was held to 38 yards on 14 rushes but caught one pass for 32 yards.

Last year, Roberts rushed for 195 yards on 20 carries in Winnipeg's 51-46 victory over Montreal and he followed that up with 150 yards on 22 carries and another three catches for 35 yards in the 42-23 loss to the Als in Montreal.

ANDRAE THURMAN

The first-year import receiver has enjoyed some success versus Montreal this season. Thurman had six receptions for 91 yards in the 44-16 loss to the Als when the two teams last met in Winnipeg. The 6-foot, 182-pound Southern Oregon product, who's played seven games for the NFL's Green Bay Packers, caught four passes for 40 yards in the season-opener in Montreal.

ANTHONY CALVILLO

The veteran quarterback is the one who stirs the Als' drink and he has been sharp versus the Bombers. Calvillo completed 27 of 45 passes for 261 yards and three touchdowns the last time the Birds were in Bomberville. The 6-foot-2, 195-pound Utah State product also completed 22 of 37 passes for 205 yards when the Als scored a 27-17 come-from-behind victory over the Bombers in the CFL season-opener in Montreal.

Last year, Calvillo completed 29 of 42 passes for 439 yards and three touchdowns in a 51-46 loss to the Bombers in Winnipeg. He followed that up by completing 25 of 35 passes for 430 yards and two TDs in a 42-23 victory over Winnipeg in Montreal.

Before last week's game against the Bombers in Montreal, Calvillo had completed 274 of 435 passes for 3,131 yards and 15 touchdowns and is working on a string of four straight seasons of passing for more than 5,000 yards.

BEN CAHOON

The man with the magic hands just keeps hurting the Bombers when they least expect it. The 5-foot-9, 186-pound non-import caught five passes for 60 yards when the Als beat the Bombers 44-16 the last time they were in Winnipeg. Cahoon also quietly caught five passes for 42 yards when Montreal downed the Bombers 27-17 in the season opener in Montreal.

Last year, Cahoon was more of a danger as he caught seven passes for 148 yards and two TDs in the 51-46 loss to Winnipeg. He followed that up by latching onto four passes for 85 yards and one major in the 42-23 victory over Winnipeg in Montreal.

KERRY WATKINS

Montreal's deep threat caught six passes for 61 yards in Montreal's 44-16 victory over the Bombers in Winnipeg. Watkins, who finished third in receiving in the CFL last season, had three receptions for 27 yards in the season-opener.

Last year, the 5-foot-10, 183-pound wide receiver caught six passes for 85 yards in the 51-46 loss to Winnipeg, following that up with seven receptions for 164 yards and one TD in the 42-23 win.


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