When the Ottawa Redblacks line up against the Edmonton Eskimos at TD Place on Saturday, they’ll be looking across the line of scrimmage at plenty of familiar faces.
Although there will be plenty of fascinating storylines to watch as the game unfolds (Will both high powered offences show up and treat us to a shootout? Which 7-5 team will finally show an ounce of consistency? Will it be like six of the last eight times these teams met and come down to the final three minutes?), perhaps the most interesting is the number of former Redblacks currently plying their trade in Edmonton.
From the front office to the practice squad, the Eskimos boast 19 players and coaches who were once a part of the Redblacks’ organization.
Let’s take a closer look.
Brock Sunderland: Before joining the Eskimos as their GM, Sunderland spent 2013 to 2016 as an assistant GM, helping Marcel Desjardins lay the foundation of the Redblacks organization.
Chris Milo: Now a regional scout, Milo split the uprights for the Redblacks in 2015 and 2016
Jason Maas: Edmonton’s current head coach and offensive coordinator only spent a year in the nation’s capital, but it was a memorable one. Under his watch quarterback Henry Burris was named the league’s MOP and Ottawa led the league in offensive yards, passing yards, rushing yards and time of possession.
Mike Gibson: The Eskimo offensive line coach supposedly never held weekly meetings with his QB when he was Ottawa’s offensive coordinator in 2014. Fun fact, a shotgun run on 3rd and short is still referred to a as a “Mike Gibson” by R-Nation.
Jordan Maksymic: Mike Reilly’s positional coach spent 2014 and 2015 with the Redblacks as a running backs coach and as an offensive assistant.
Travis Brown: following a two year playing career with the Redblacks, Brown landed in Edmonton as assistant linebacker coach.
Kevin Glenn: Briefly a member of the Redblacks organization in 2014, snakes kept him from ever taking the field.
Danny O’Brien: Held a clipboard and checked down passes whenever he could from 2014 to 2016 for the Redblacks.
Pascal Lochard: Spent a few months of the 2017 off-season with the Redblacks before becoming a training camp casualty.
Jamill Smith: Despite his small stature, Smith was a fan favourite in Ottawa for the toughness he displayed when returning kicks.
Juron Criner: Two injury plagued seasons in Ottawa will best be remembered for a pair of ridiculous catches during the Redblacks’ championship run
Colin Kelly: A steady presence at right tackle, Kelly spent 2014 and 2015 with Ottawa.
Tommie Draheim: Started at left tackle in Ottawa’s 2016 Grey Cup win.
Jake Ceresna: Traded this past off-season, Ceresna’s rookie year in Ottawa was a strong one; 13 starts resulted in 18 tackles, two sacks, eleven QB pressures, four knockdowns and four tackles for a loss.
Arnaud Gascon-Nadon: Spent a pair of seasons with the Redblacks, winning the Grey Cup in 2016. R-Nation’s fondest memory remains his dropped interception in the 2015 East Final, the play before 2nd & 25.
Mike Moore: Broke into the league in 2016 with the Redblacks.
Forrest Hightower: Two seasons in the nation’s capital resulted in back to back Grey Cup appearances
Nick Taylor: Spent 2016 and 2017 patrolling Ottawa’s secondary.