There was only one vote Calgary Stampeders’ franchise quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell wanted for the CFL’s all-decade team — Ricky Ray’s.
The league followed 3DownNation‘s initiative calling for fans and media to vote on the best three-down squad from the last decade. Mitchell, Ray and Mike Reilly were the three quarterbacks selected in our version.
“In my opinion, I’d probably go with Bo because he checks off all the boxes. Obviously he’s played on the best team probably of the decade, which helps,” Ray told Canadian Press reporter Dan Ralph.
“But he was a big part of making (Calgary) one of the best teams. I’d definitely give him the nod. Me personally, I missed too many games and don’t have the won-lost record to be up there.”
Both future Hall of Fame quarterbacks won two Grey Cups from 2010 to 2019. Ray guided the Boatmen to titles in 2012 and 2017, while Mitchell did the same with the Stamps in 2014 and 2018.
The lone head-to-head match-up was won by Ray when Toronto upset a heavily-favoured Calgary team in the snow in Ottawa in 2017.
“The one vote I cared about the most, the biggest one was knowing that Ricky Ray came out and said something. A guy that doesn’t speak out very often and definitely one of the best to ever do it,” Mitchell said on Sportsnet 960 The Fan radio in Calgary.
Ray holds the individual record for Grey Cup wins as a starting quarterback with four, including two each with Edmonton (2003, 2005) and Toronto (2012, 2017). The 2005 Grey Cup MVP has thrown the most-ever touchdowns in the CFL title game with nine majors.
“That was enough confidence in itself, so even if I don’t get the all-decade, that’s cool with me because having Ricky Ray’s respect over the last decade is pretty cool,” Mitchell said.
The quarterbacks share a mutual admiration for one another and the extensive resumes they’ve built. Mitchell’s career is still ongoing and if he plays as long as Ray did, the Stamps’ gunslinger could be in contention for the next all-decade team.