Argos load up with rested starters for matchup with Riders

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

The Toronto Argonauts are preparing to get some impact performers back into game shape before the playoffs, reinserting five starters into the lineup for their clash with the Saskatchewan Roughriders on Saturday.

On the defensive side of the ball, all-star cornerback Jamal Peters is the most significant addition. In 11 games this season since returning from the NFL, the third-year cover man has notched 25 defensive tackles and four interceptions. He’ll be joined in the starting lineup by Canadian middle linebacker Jordan Williams, who has 39 defensive tackles in 12 games this year.

Offensively, starting running back A.J. Ouellette is likely to see his final action of the regular season after being a bi-weekly healthy scratch down the stretch. The 28-year-old needs just 41 yards to cross the 1,000-yard threshold for the first time in his career and will get a chance to do so behind right guard Peter Nicastro, who is also returning to the lineup after a brief absence.

The kicking game will also receive a shake-up, as Australian punter John Haggerty returns from a knee injury. Kicker Boris Bede, who has handled both duties the past several weeks, will receive some well-earned rest as a healthy scratch, with Mexican rookie Alfredo Lozada expected to handle all placekicking duties.

The only other significant member of the Argos being given the week off is defensive end Folarin Orimolade. The 27-year-old has 35 tackles and 10 sacks since Toronto made him the league’s highest-paid edge rusher this offseason.

Canadian defensive back Jamie Harry (Achilles) has been placed on the one-game injured list, while defensive tackle Deionte Knight and offensive lineman Shane Richards will be healthy scratches. British linebacker Emmanuel Falola has been returned to the practice roster.

The Argos (14-2) will visit the Riders (6-11) on Saturday, October 21 at 4:00 p.m. EDT. With a victory, Toronto can equal their franchise record for regular-season wins set in 1996 and 1997.

Photo courtesy: Toronto Argonauts