What Eric Rogers means to the Stamps (and Bo Levi Mitchell)

Eric Rogers not only provides the Calgary Stampeders with a bonified No. 1 receiver but also a player in which quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell has complete trust and confidence.

The West Final showed exactly why.

During Calgary’s win over Winnipeg, Mitchell threw a pass into tight coverage, trusting Rogers to go up and bring it down.

That highlight reel grab proves the 2015 CFL receiving champ is playing at a high level with the Stampeders gunslinger.

The two players have plenty of history together. Back in 2014, Mitchell emerged as the starting quarterback and led the Stampeders to the Grey Cup championship. During that run, Rogers burst onto the scene, including grabbing five balls for a game-high 108 yards in the CFL title game. There was an instant chemistry between QB and receiver and it was evident a year later as Mitchell and Rogers shredded defences to the tune of 1,448 yards and 10 touchdowns, both totals that topped the league.

Rogers left for the NFL after that spectacular season and Mitchell struggled to find the same comfort level with another receiver. Marquay McDaniel produced 1,074 yards in 2016, but he didn’t have the jump ball or vertical stretch ability Rogers does. DaVaris Daniels appeared to be capable of being a No. 1 receiver when he lit up defences for 885 yards and nine touchdowns in 11 games earning the CFL Most Outstanding Rookie award in the process. However, the pace dropped off in 2017, partly due to injuries. Marken Michel and Kamar Jorden have done well with Mitchell, but neither of them, with all due respect, have the complete package of skills like Rogers – the best rebounder in the CFL.

Rogers came back to the Stamps in part because of Mitchell. Calgary’s franchise quarterback kept in touch with Rogers after he signed with the San Francisco 49ers in January 2016 and general manager Jon Hufnagel made his move this off-season, releasing McDaniel in February to free up roughly $160,000 in cap space then waiting for Rogers to exhaust his NFL options and get healthy as he recovered from a torn ACL.

It was worth the wait, especially considering John Hufnagel inked Rogers to a bargain one-year deal: $60,000 base, $18,000 housing, $10.000 signing bonus, $4,000 travel, $2,000 active equals $94,000 in hard money. Rogers has been worth every dollar paid just for the playoffs. In five career CFL playoff games Rogers numbers:  21 receptions for 417 yards and eight touchdowns.

2014 West Final: 3-60-2

2014 Grey Cup: 5-108-0

2015 West Semifinal: 4-71-2

2015 West Final: 3-117-1

2018 West Final: 6-61-3

Eight majors in five post-season contests.

The Stamps may well have the most dynamic receiver in the three-down game ridin’ like he never left the saddle.

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