After two straight weeks in which missed field goals proved a major factor in the game, the B.C. Lions are looking to make a change at the position.
TSN’s Farhan Lalji reports the team has its eyes south of the border after Japanese kicker Takeru Yamasaki has hovered at the 50 percent mark through two weeks, going 4-of-8 with a long of 43 and a handful of short misses.
“Don’t be surprised if K Stefan Flintoft makes his way onto the B.C. Lions roster next week. Yamasaki showed well in camp but is clearly affected by the stage,” Lalji tweeted. “B.C. is looking into other options but quarantines & more kickers being kept by NFL teams due to COVID are making that harder.”
The team’s third-round pick in the 2021 Global Draft out of the X-League’s Obic Seagulls, Yamasaki came with an impressive resume, including a stint in the US with The Spring League where he went 7-of-8 with a long of 57 yards. He won the job decisively in training camp and the team opted to dress more than their required number of Global players to give him an opportunity, but he appears to be struggling with the adjustment to the professional level.
American Stefan Flintoft, who Yamasaki beat for the role in training camp, looks set to step in at least temporarily. The UCLA product is a primary punter who has never kicked in game, but the Lions believe he can be a three-tool player. Australian Jake Ford, who fulfills the team’s Global requirement at punter, will continue in the role but could be asked to do double duty thanks to his experience kicking in The Spring League.
Long term, the team is looking south of the border but the unique situation of the 2021 season means that help on that front is at least two weeks away.