Brandon Bridge getting Hall-of-Fame guidance from Damon Allen

Damon Allen waited patiently outside the visitor locker room underneath the stands at BMO Field.

The Hall of Famer was there to see the Riders quarterback who had been called from the bench and pulled off a remarkable comeback.

Years before when Brandon Bridge was a youngster, he won a raffle at Square One mall in Mississauga. The prize: a signed ball and picture with Allen. Suzanne, Bridge’s mom, took him to get what her son won and invited Allen over for dinner. The two quarterbacks spent time going over defences and forming a bond that would see Allen give him tickets to any Argos game he wanted to attend.

“I’ve known Brandon since he was a kid. To see him develop where he is today – he played outstanding,” Allen said after watching Bridge throw for 292 yards and three touchdowns in the 27-24 win over Toronto. “It grows the confidence level.”

The relationship has meant a lot to Bridge as well.

“I’ve known Damon Allen for a long time – he’s always been a great mentor for me,” Bridge said.

Bridge is currently behind Kevin Glenn with Saskatchewan. At the beginning of Allen’s 23-year CFL career, he was a backup for the Eskimos.

“Coming into the game in very difficult situations and challenges, when I was with Edmonton, they prepared me. I was molded, prepared as a young quarterback,” Allen said. “At one point we had Matt Dunigan, myself, and Tracy Ham who was holding the clipboard and we’re all Hall of Famers.”

Glenn – 38-years-old with 17 years of CFL experience – provides a veteran presence for Bridge to learn from.

“People have to play the reliever role, obviously Damon Allen had to play that at one point in time in his career and obviously you see what he’s done. He always tells me be patient, learn from a legend – KG is a future Hall of Famer – and every time you get that opportunity make sure that you make the best of it.”

That’s what Bridge has done each time he’s seen extended action in 2017. Starting for an injured Glenn in Week 13 against Hamilton he threw for 231 yards and two touchdowns in a 27-19 Riders win. With Glenn struggling in the first quarter at BMO Field in Week 16, Bridge entered and led a comeback victory from 13 points down.

“Ever since he was a kid, growing up to high school and college, every single level of football I helped him understand the position. I knew the passion and his desire. That’s why I came down to see him – you see your work on the field,” Allen said.

The four-time Grey Cup champion talks to Bridge more than any other quarterback.

“We have many conversations, even during the time he was with Montreal, trying to understand what to do and handling the situation,” Allen said. “Because all the level of experience and information that I have and learned, it would be a shame for me just to hoard it, so I share and give it all out.”

Justin Dunk

Justin Dunk

Justin Dunk was a five-year starter at quarterback for the University of Guelph. He covers the league for Sportsnet and 3DownNation.
Justin Dunk
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Justin Dunk
About Justin Dunk (582 Articles)
Justin Dunk was a five-year starter at quarterback for the University of Guelph. He covers the league for Sportsnet and 3DownNation.

15 Comments on Brandon Bridge getting Hall-of-Fame guidance from Damon Allen

  1. I honestly wish this website had more articles like this instead of the buzzfeed-esque clickbait pieces.

    Very cool story.

  2. Great story!

  3. Savanna DeVille // October 12, 2017 at 6:46 pm //

    What a great situation for Saskatchewan! KG has always been a solid, consistent performer. That’s why his career has been so durable.
    I’ve never had worries or concerns whenever KG starts a game for us.
    And now we have a solid bridge to our future, a Tall in the Saddle QB to build a brand on!
    Bridge looks like he’s standing
    on stilts back there in the pocket, King of all he surveys.
    He’s like the big guns on the deck of a Destroyer. His brain flawlessly determines the speed and range of his target. He can lob shells overtop, toss darts sidearm, or fire laser beams downstream. He’s got all the physical tools, is extremely smart, and has some of the best to ever play the game as his mentors. That is a formula for success. He is good enough now to start for any team in this league. So long as KG is not a vampire with no expiry date, then it seems obvious that Brandon Bridge is on his way to having a stellar career. I think it’s right that KG is our starter Friday night. They’ll only switch to Air-Canada mid-flight if our pass protection is faltering. But isn’t it great for RIDER FANS that we have both kinds of talent we need to succeed? Incomparable experience in Kevin Glenn. And a bright, fresh young talent
    who can see the Horizon from a sub-street level playing field!
    Incredible we are so fortunate to have such a great organization running our football team.
    Here comes Friday Night Football…IT’S SHOWTIME!!
    RedBlacks about to left out in the rain and hung up to dry.
    RedBlacks are gonna get pummeled on the prairies,
    will be revealed that they are no longer RedBlacks, just a pile of rusted out chainsaws.
    Ottawa RedBlacks, here comes your reality check…Your new name will be the RUSTY BLACK&DECKERS! Enjoy your plane ride home Friday night…courtesy of AIR CANADA!!

  4. South-west cowboy // October 12, 2017 at 7:00 pm //

    @ Savanna;

    Do you realize that Brandon Bridge is a free agent at years end?
    He could be playing for any team next year.

    • What’s your point? Oh he’s a free agent? Wow thanks Columbo! “And another thing; bridge is a free agent”. You’re an idiot SW Cowgirl. Tell us something we don’t know.

      • justforkicks // October 12, 2017 at 10:18 pm //

        Don’t be so hard on the cowgirl Gerry. This way Jones will hear about him being a FA as well! LOL
        In all seriousness I am sure that is well into consideration and if Bridge continues to show his potential he’ll be back. I’d even be OK to have Glenn back one more year in some capacity to help him along.

      • Chill

    • Spoken like a true Stump Rider hater. Can’t wait for Bo Peep to get popped and see how your Canadian does.

    • riderontheisland // October 13, 2017 at 5:27 pm //

      As everyone has already pointed out the it’s well known that BB is a FA after this season, but just to point out the obvious that starting QBs don’t often roam around in this league. There are only 9 teams and with the Riders having an opening for a starter next year he will stick around. That will happen because he will get an offer from the Riders on the low side for a starter, but it will be his team. This season has made people forget about Franklin and we always have Adams as a secondary option

  5. Thank you to Damon from Rider fans..

  6. This piece was a breath of fresh air – good stuff

  7. Blue Rules // October 13, 2017 at 12:05 am //

    Bridge playing for Bombers,…Hmmmm I kinda like that, we have a great program for Canadian QB’s. Bout time he had some good coaching.

    • Savanna DeVille // October 13, 2017 at 12:58 am //

      Dream On, Blue Rules…
      The only Canadian Bridge you will see next year is where the Tran-Canada Highway spans the Red River next to the Maple Grove Off-Leash Dog Park!
      Mosaic still has that “New Stadium Smell”. It’s the smell of VICTORY! He knows where his BEST home is at. BB will be a
      RIDER FOREVER! And the rest of the League will be GREEN with Envy! Destiny…cannot be denied!

  8. Margaret m // October 13, 2017 at 6:02 pm //

    Bridge will be a lifelong rider perhaps not the second coming but somewhere in the ether the little general is smiling down on someone with the chops to lead the green toward a competitive future

  9. Bridge has to GREAT MENTORS to look up to and get advise from in Allen and Glenn. The kid is a winner in my book and I hope NEXT YEAR will be HIS TIME to take over the starters job in Riderland. Hope Chris Jones really sees his QB of the future is already playing for him.

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