August 18, 2020

Top 10 Exclusive : Games Played

Winnipeg Blue Bombers defensive tackle Doug Brown (97) holds back Montreal Alouettes center Luc Brodeur-Jourdain, (58) during 1st half CFL action at Molson Stadium in Montreal Sunday, September 18, 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Peter McCabe

The Winnipeg Football Club has 90 years of history to celebrate, dating way back to the days of leather helmets and the Great Depression.

Over that time there have been countless great plays authored by superstar players… and average Joes, too. There have been memorable games featuring iconic moments and, dating back to 1930, this franchise has captured a Grey Cup championship 11 times.

Each week cracks open the record book, dusts off the archives and dives deep into our collective memory banks for our Top 10 Exclusive list.

Trevor Kennerd Bob Cameron Winnipeg Blue Bombers 1989. Photo John Bradley

This week: Top 10 Games Played

This is a tough week for the Canadian Football League and its fans, what with plans for a 2020 season flushed when the federal government backed away on a funding request.

It means that for the first time since 1919, no Grey Cup will be awarded in the fall. It also means that no games will be played by any one player across the league. That had us leafing through both the CFL and Bombers media guides to take a peek again at the club’s record for all-time games played.

1. Bob Cameron, P – 394 games played from 1980-2002

A number that seems untouchable, Cameron suited up for almost 400 games in his 23 seasons with the Bombers. That number ranks second all-time in the CFL to B.C. Lions kicker Lui Passaglia’s 408. Cameron does hold the CFL record with 353 consecutive games played.

2. Troy Westwood, K – 293 games played from 1991-2007, 2009

The Bombers’ all-time leading scorer, Ol’ Lefty was a fixture in the kicking game following the retirement of Trevor Kennerd for years afterward.

3. Chris Walby, DL/OT – 249 games played from 1981-96

It’s a remarkable total, given Walby lined up at a position in the trenches, making him vulnerable to so many chop blocks, blind shots in an entanglement of bodies on virtually every snap.

4. Stan Mikawos, DT – 220 games played from 1982-96

Just like the Walby number, the fact that Mikawos played this long from the defensive tackle spot speaks of his durability.

5. Milt Stegall, REC – 199 games played from 1995-2008

Nobody took better care of their body – still does to this day – than Stegall.  Consider this number: Stegall suited up for 199 games and the CFL’s all-time TD leader crossed the goal line for a score an astonishing 147 times.

6. John Bonk, C – 195 games played from 1973-85

The Bombers landed Bonk from the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in 1973 in one of the shrewdest trades in franchise history. Winnipeg sent DB Peter Ribbins to the Ticats for Bonk, who then played 12 seasons, serving as both the centre and long-snapper. He played every game from 1974-84.

7. Ernie Pitts, WR/DB – 194 games played from 1957-69

The story of Pitts’ career is incredible – he was a three-time divisional all-star at receiver before switching to defensive back in the latter stages of his career. And he was a three-time all-star at that spot, too.

8. Roger Savoie, T/DT – 191 games played from 1951-65

A proud product of St. Boniface, Savoie played for 16 seasons for his hometown Bombers and played in seven Grey Cups, winning four.

9. Doug Brown, DT – 188 games played from 2001-2011

So many remember Brown for his dominance at the defensive tackle position. But what can be overlooked was how long that dominance lasted playing such a gruelling spot.

10. Trevor Kennerd, K – 188 games played from 1980-91

Undrafted, the Bombers signed Kennerd as a free agent in 1980. He rewarded the club by then playing for 12 seasons, including three Grey Cups, while scoring over 100 points in 11 of his 12 years.