Lions QB Mike Reilly misses walkthrough, but still will start against Argos

Photo courtesy: Scott Grant/

The CFL’s iron man Mike Reilly missed the B.C. Lions walkthrough on Friday, but he’ll still start on Saturday in Week 17 against the Toronto Argonauts.

Reilly is the only starting quarterback to play ever regular season game so far in 2019. The 34-year-old has passed for 3,615 yards, 15 touchdowns against 15 interceptions while completing just under 70 percent of his attempts.

The Lions paid $2.9 million over four years — $725,000 per season — for Reilly to sign on the dotted line in February. That made the 34-year-old the highest-paid player in the league.

Reilly had thrown for over 5,000 yards in three straight CFL seasons with the Edmonton Eskimos. He threw for a career-high 5,830 yards and 30 touchdowns in 2017, earning the CFL most outstanding player award.

Back in 2015, Reilly led the Eskimos to a Grey Cup championship and earned CFL title game MVP honours. Reilly was originally acquired by the Eskimos in January 2013 when then-general manager Ed Hervey sent two second-round draft picks (2013 and 2014) to B.C. for the QB and the Lions’ second-round selection in 2013.

Reilly apprenticed behind Travis Lulay in B.C. for three seasons, part of the Lions Grey Cup-winning squad in 2011. B.C. has won three games in a row and have slim playoff chances still alive. The Lions must beat the Argos in order to keep the post-season even a small possibility and having Reilly on the field greatly improves those odds.