Blue Bombers announce team award winners
WINNIPEG, MB., November 17, 2021 — The Canadian Football League announced today the team-by-team winners for the 2021 Most Outstanding Player Awards and the Winnipeg Blue Bombers list features six players in the midst of sensational seasons.
The voting was conducted by members of the local chapter of the Football Reporters of Canada (FRC) and the league’s head coaches and returned the following results for the Blue Bombers:
• Most Outstanding Player: Quarterback Zach Collaros
• Most Outstanding Defensive Player: Linebacker Adam Bighill
• Most Outstanding Canadian Player: Receiver Nic Demski*
• Most Outstanding Offensive Lineman: Left tackle Stanley Bryant*
• Most Outstanding Special Teams Player: Fullback Mike Miller*
• Most Outstanding Rookie: Defensive back DeAundre Alford*
*Indicates unanimous selection
Most Outstanding Player
Zach Collaros has been named his team’s MOP three times, twice with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats (2014 and 2015) and now with the Blue Bombers in his first full year as the club’s starting quarterback.
Collaros, who sat out last week’s game in Montreal, is currently second in the CFL in passing yards with 3,112 and leads the league in touchdown passes with 20. He has completed 70.2 percent of his passes and has a QB-efficiency rating of 111.6 – both best among CFL pivots.
Most importantly, the Bombers are 11-1 in his starts this year and 15-1 overall dating back to his arrival in 2019 at the trade deadline and including a 4-0 run that season that included the Grey Cup victory.
Most Outstanding Defensive Player
Adam Bighill is a two-time CFL Most Outstanding Defensive Player Award winner, having previously won league-wide honours in 2015 (with the B.C. Lions) and in 2018 in his first year with the Blue Bombers. This is his fifth time he has been selected his team’s top defensive player, having also won in 2018, 2015, 2013 and 2012.
Bighill has suited up for all 13 games for the Bombers this season and has registered 66 tackles, two interceptions and two fumble recoveries, including one for a touchdown. His tackle totals this season have also moved him into 9th spot on the CFL’s all-time list.
Most Outstanding Canadian Player
Nic Demski has already posted career-best numbers with 637 receiving yards and four receiving touchdowns on 44 receptions, and has tied his best season with five TDs overall, including one along the ground. This is the first team award for the Winnipeg product in his six CFL seasons, the last three with the Blue Bombers.
Most Outstanding Offensive Lineman
Stanley Bryant is the Blue Bombers top offensive lineman for the fifth time and fourth consecutive season – having also won in 2015 and 2017-19 – and has earned team honours for a seventh time, including in 2011 and 2013 as a member of the Calgary Stampeders.
Bryant is a two-time winner of the CFL Most Outstanding Offensive Lineman award, winning in 2017 and 2018 as a member of the Blue Bombers, and was also the league runner-up in 2019.
Bryant — who was listed as the inactive player in last week’s game – ending his streak of 102 consecutive starts for the Bombers — has been a mainstay on the left side of the offensive line and a key part of an offensive unit that leads the CFL in scoring, ranks second in rushing and has allowed a league-low 15 quarterback sacks.
Most Outstanding Special Teams Player
Mike Miller continues to be as consistent as any special-teams player in the CFL. The veteran fullback leads the CFL with 23 special-teams tackles and this season became the league leader in that department, moving past former B.C. Lions linebacker Jason Arakgi into top spot. Miller now has 208 career special-teams tackles, and counting. Miller was also named the Blue Bombers and West Division’s Most Outstanding Special Teams Player in 2019.
Most Outstanding Rookie
DeAundre Alford has had a superb rookie campaign with the Blue Bombers. The Tusculum University product came straight to the CFL after college and has started all 13 games this season, lining up at both cornerback spots.
Alford is currently second in the CFL in interceptions with four, including one for a touchdown in a win over the Edmonton Elks. His 45 tackles ranks third on the club, behind only Bighill (66) and Deatrick Nichols (46).
The next round of voting for the CFL awards will see the West and East Division winners announced next Wednesday, with the CFL’s Most Outstanding Player Awards announced during Grey Cup week in Hamilton.