Cody Fajardo still can’t believe how Adam Bighill intercepted him during the Banjo Bowl

Photo courtesy: Saskatchewan Roughriders

Saskatchewan Roughriders’ quarterback Cody Fajardo still can’t wrap his mind around how Adam Bighill intercepted him during the Banjo Bowl.

The veteran pivot was asked by the media on Wednesday whether he felt opponents were doing a better job of catching his interceptable throws this season. He referenced Bighill’s catch from Week 6 as a pass he couldn’t believe was picked off by a defender.

“The one I can think of off the top of my head is Bighill. I just remember that play and I was like, ‘How did he intercept that football?'” said Fajardo via videoconference.

“That’s just these defensive players in this league getting much more savvy and much better at playing the ball. You can’t really miss easy ones to them, you have to put it in a spot where nobody can get it.”

Fajardo targeted slotback Brayden Lenius on the play, though pressure forced him into an errant throw. Bighill came across the formation seemingly out of nowhere to make a diving interception, ending Saskatchewan’s drive deep in Winnipeg territory.

“There’s plenty of balls that should have been picked that weren’t picked, so I think that goes for any quarterback. I watch enough tape of every quarterback where it’s like, ‘How does this ball get intercepted?’ and then maybe two drives later this ball doesn’t get intercepted. That’s one of those things that I think by the end of the year it all evens out,” said Fajardo.

The 29-year-old threw eight interceptions on 473 pass attempts in 2019, a rate of just 1.7 percent. He has been intercepted on 3.3 percent of his throws this season, throwing six picks on 182 attempts.

The Riders are scheduled to visit the Lions for a critical game on Friday as the teams currently share second place in the West Division standings with matching 4-2 records.

Fajardo was B.C.’s third-string quarterback in 2018 where he sat behind Travis Lulay and Jonathon Jennings on the depth chart. He’s looking to help his team secure sole possession of second place in the standings while seeking revenge against his former club.

“Anytime you were with a former team you obviously want to go and show out,” said Fajardo. “There’s a little chip on your shoulder when it comes to that, but at the end of the day professional football is all about winning football games and it doesn’t matter who the opponent is — I want to do everything I can to help this team win.”

John Hodge is a Canadian football reporter based in Winnipeg.