LB Nyles Morgan out for Elks, SAM Enock Makonzo returns vs. Argos

Photo: Timothy Matwey/3DownNation. All rights reserved.

The Edmonton Elks will be without their top defensive playmaker ahead of Friday’s matchup with the Toronto Argonauts.

Middle linebacker Nyles Morgan (hamstring) has been added to the one-game injured list. In 14 games this season, the 27-year-old has set new career highs with 98 tackles, four sacks, and an interception. He’ll be replaced by Tony Jones, who has made 22 defensive tackles, 10 special teams tackles, a sack and a forced fumble in 15 appearances.

Also headed to the one-game injured list are defensive tackles J-Min Pelley (appendicitis) and Sam Acheampong (groin), cornerback Marcus Lewis (calf), and safety Scott Hutter (shoulder). Lewis leads the team with four interceptions, while Hutter is tops in special teams tackles with 17.

Providing relief for the banged-up defence is the return of strongside linebacker Enock Makonzo, who has missed the last 12 games with a foot injury. The 2022 first-round pick registered 56 defensive tackles, two sacks and a forced fumble as a rookie, but had just five tackles in three games before going down this year.

Makonzo’s return will bump Loucheiz Purifoy back to safety, while Jeremie Dominique draws into the lineup to provide insurance at both positions. Donovan Olumba will make his first start of the season at cornerback, while rookie Jake Taylor has been returned to the practice roster.

Up front, hulking Canadian defensive tackle Olivier Charles-Pierre will dress to replace Pelley, with Cole Nelson receiving the start. Linebacker Jordan Reaves and defensive end Eli Mencer will help fill the void on special teams.

The Elks (4-11) will visit the Argos (12-2) on Friday, October 6 at 7:00 p.m. EDT. Toronto recorded a 43-31 victory over Edmonton back in Week 3.

Photo courtesy: Edmonton Elks