Ticats’ Bralon Addison looking forward to playing against former teammate Brandon Banks

Photo courtesy: Ryan McCullough/Hamilton Tiger-Cats

Hamilton Tiger-Cats’ receiver Bralon Addison is looking forward to playing against former teammate Brandon Banks for the first time in the club’s upcoming preseason game against Toronto.

“It’ll be good just to get to see him. I always wish he’s doing well. I want to see him healthy, I want to see him doing him. I think last year was tough on him being away from his family and the COVID rules and not being able to see his kids and things like that so I know he’ll be better mentally this year,” Addison told the media on Monday.

“He’ll be better physically. He’ll be Speedy B. So I’m excited to see him, show him some love and we’re going to compete.”

Banks made 44 catches for 474 yards and two touchdowns over ten games last season, which was a significant drop from the sensational numbers he posted in 2019 when he was named the league’s Most Outstanding Player. He signed a two-year deal with the Argonauts in February after he and the Ticats elected to part ways after nine years together.

The 34-year-old did not dress for Toronto’s first preseason game — a 23-17 loss to the Ottawa Redblacks — but is expected to play when the Argos host the Ticats at Alumni Stadium in Guelph.

The former teammates should see plenty of each other this year even if one or both don’t end up dressing on Friday. Hamilton and Toronto are scheduled to play four times during the regular season — twice at BMO Field and twice at Tim Hortons Field — over a month-long span from August 6 and September 5.

Addison missed most of last season due to injury, recording 18 receptions for 231 yards over just three games. Players such as Steven Dunbar Jr., Tim White, and Papi White stepped up to fill key roles in the receiving corps and Addison is encouraged from what he’s seen out of all the club’s young targets in training camp.

“We got so many guys every day making plays in practice,” said Addison. “I feel like I say this every year. We come into camp and I’m saying that we got the deepest group in the league.”

“It’s been good to just have that camaraderie as a receiver group and I guess I’m that vet in the room now, but just seeing how deep we are from even the young guys coming in ready to play, it’s reassuring for sure.”

The Ticats added Canadian receivers Lemar Durant and Tyler Ternowski to the six-game injured list on Monday along with starting Canadian offensive lineman Coulter Woodmansey. Though he did not provide updates on the players individually, head coach Orlondo Steinauer indicated that none of the injuries were season-ending.

“There’s nobody that is gonna be gone, one where the season is over,” he said. “Nothing like that.”

John Hodge is a CFL insider and draft analyst who has been covering the league since 2014.