Some CFLers are great because they look great… well, because they look like NFLers.
You watch them run, throw, or catch, and you just know they have an extra gear. An extra gear that seems – because it’s more dynamic and a little more powerful – American. It’s why Mike Sims-Walker could catch for 137 yards in his debut with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers this year, despite being a Jacksonville cast-off and despite the Bombers’ insistence that he was taking too long to learn the ‘Canadian game’. It’s why Ricky Williams’ one year with the Toronto Argonauts was disappointing but still included a 4.8 yards per carry average.
Kory Sheets, the running back who sprinted to a record 197 yards in Sunday’s 101st Grey Cup and won the game’s Most Oustanding Player award, is that kind of CFLer.
His white shoes are impossible to miss, as are his high-kick strides or his exploding shoulders. He’s the only guy in the CFL who, when he runs, has the style or look of a guy like Arian Foster. At his worst, Le’Veon Bell or Knowshon Moreno.
While other Canadian residence’d rushers punch and scramble their way up the stats board, Sheets seems to be the only guy capable of stopping himself, or at least the only guy capable of limiting himself.
Despite having to tackle a frozen tundra on Sunday in Regina, Sheets still managed to barely miss 200 yards on the ground – a feat phenomenal on any surface, even turf or clay or whatever else athletes call a court or field.
Kory Sheets is the absolute truth, a guy as natural and dominant as a number of prolific expats before him, be it Cameron Wake (a leading pass rusher for the NFL’s Dolphins) or even Doug Flutie, a former Heisman trophy winner and star pivot for the Buffalo Bills.
Let’s just hope he falls in love with Saskatchewan or, at the very least, our Canadian game. Because the Canadian game needs players like him.