Photo Scott Grant / CFLPhotoArchive.com

Ticats’ playmaker Brandon Banks walked into the media room at Tim Hortons Field with a crutch helping him make his way to the stage.

“He’s probably still faster than most people too on a crutch,” quarterback Dane Evans said.

He suffered a sports hernia in the Grey Cup loss to Winnipeg and the pain lingered. Banks is set to have surgery on the ailment and will be ready for training camp in 2020, according to head coach Orlondo Steinauer.

“It’s not a career ender. We expect a full recovery and for him to be ready for training camp 2020,” Steinauer said.

The diminutive pass catcher took a shot to his leg in the third quarter and it forced him to be sidelined for the remainder of the game. He caught six passes for 72 yards prior to exiting the field in the CFL championship.

“I got tackled around my leg. I felt something pop, I thought it was my groin, I thought I can go stretch it and go back in the game until I stuck my hand down my pants and I had a big knot — sports hernia and I gotta have surgery.” Banks said.

The 31-year-old admitted he was hurting and wanted to have the procedure in the next 48 hours. It’s a six-to-eight week recovery period for the hernia. But it’s not the only time Banks will have to go under the knife during the off-season.

After suffering a broken collarbone in October 2018, Banks had a plate inserted to help hold the shoulder together. The plan was always to take it out at the completion of the 2019 campaign. Banks had 94 catches for 1,423 yards and 11 touchdowns over 14 games in a breakout year.

“I’m going to get the plate taken out. The later it got in the season I didn’t think about it until a couple times I got hit and it made me feel it, but it didn’t stop me or restrict me,” Banks said.

“I’m 100 percent healed, it’s just the plate is irritating.”

Speedy B was the 2019 CFL Most Outstanding Player. He started 16 games at receiver for Hamilton during the regular season and set career highs while leading the CFL in all major receiving categories, including receptions (112), yards (1,550) and touchdowns (13), as well as targets (158). His 112 receptions were a Ticats’ single-season franchise record.

Adding to the emotions of the injury setback was the fact Banks fell to 0-3 in Grey Cup appearances. In 2014 Banks had what looked to be the game-winning punt return brought back by penalty. Last Sunday Banks wasn’t able despite all his might to finish the CFL championship.

“I love adversity. I love the underdog story. I just take the punch in the face and try to counteract,” Banks said. “I’m going to attack the process. I’ll be here training hard to get back to the player I know I can be.”

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Justin Dunk is the pre-eminent CFL insider and unabashed supporter of Canadian quarterbacks. He is one of the founders of the new 3DownNation.