Riders’ Charleston Hughes goes under the knife

Photo Scott Grant / CFLPhotoArchive.com
Photo courtesy: Scott Grant/CFLPhotoArchive.com

Saskatchewan Roughriders defensive lineman Charleston Hughes underwent surgery on his elbow Monday morning.

Hughes Tweeted a picture from his hospital bed. He suffered the injury around the midpoint of the CFL season and wore a brace for the remainder of the schedule.

The 35-year-old led the league with 16 sacks during the 2019 season, adding 50 tackles, four forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and one defensive touchdown in 17 games. Rightfully so, Hughes felt he was snubbed for the West Division Most Outstanding Defensive Player award. Hughes has topped the league in quarterback takedowns five times in his career: 2013, 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019.

Hughes played in 147 games for the Stampeders recording 372 tackles, 99 sacks, 23 forced fumbles, three interceptions and one defensive touchdown. The two-time Grey Cup champion had spent his entire career in Calgary until he was dealt to Hamilton and the Saskatchewan. He left the Stamps tied for the franchise record in sacks at 99.

Five straight seasons Hughes has notched double-digit sack totals and been a league all-star six times. Hughes was acquired in February 2018 when the Riders sent quarterback Vernon Adams to Hamilton.

Even though Hughes was playing hurt he managed six sacks in the final eight games of the season and added five tackles and one quarterback takedown in the West Final. Hughes is expected to make a full recovery and be ready for training camp in 2020.

Justin Dunk is a football insider, sports reporter and anchor.