William Stanback returns to practice for Montreal Alouettes but won’t play this week in Edmonton

Photo courtesy: Dave Chidley/CFL.ca

Montreal Alouettes’ running back William Stanback is getting ready to make his return to the lineup after suffering a broken ankle in the club’s season-opening loss to the Calgary Stampeders way back on June 9.

“I feel really good, I feel confident. Having my guys behind me was the number one thing that kept me going, so kudos to them,” Stanback told the media in Montreal.

“Always day in and day out in the locker room, ‘Stan, do what you gotta do, take your time, get rehabbed, there’s no rush.’ I just continued to embed that in my head and know that these guys have my back, so I’m gonna do whatever I can do to make sure I can get back with them to help them in any kind of way that I can.”

The 28-year-old was named a CFL all-star in 2021 after leading the league with 1,176 rushing yards over 12 games. He was also named the Most Outstanding Player in the East Division, though he lost out on the award at the league level to Winnipeg Blue Bombers’ quarterback Zach Collaros.

He was a limited participant in practice on Tuesday according to the team’s injury report and, though he will not dress this week against the Edmonton Elks, could return the following week against the Ottawa Redblacks.

“It felt great, just a little fatigue with conditioning and everything but that comes with it, being out so long. But I’m prepared for it, I’m prepared to continue to work to make sure that I get my conditioning back up to par so when I do get back out there on the field, I hit the ground running,” said Stanback.

The four-year veteran indicated that it was difficult to sit out for so long, especially with his family back home in the United States. He spoke daily with his wife and kids over Facetime, which he said helped a lot during a challenging recovery process. His family is planning to travel to Montreal for a game in October.

“I was in a mental state where it was really hard for me to get through each day because right now my life is nothing but football and family. Not being able to participate in practices and travel with my guys and go out there and face opponents every weekend, it hurt,” said Stanback.

The Alouettes (6-7) are scheduled to visit the Edmonton Elks (4-10) on Saturday with kickoff slated for 4:00 p.m. EDT.