Half of this weekend's games didn't mean anything for the playoff picture, and it's interesting that most of the notable individual showings also took place in games with something on the line for at least one team. Of course, part of that's because the Winnipeg-Montreal and B.C.-Saskatchewan games saw plenty of substitutions, so many starters didn't see much playing time in those contests. The weekend had some great individual performances, though, including several that are recognized in the latest installment of our Three Stars series:
First Star: Maurice Price, wide receiver, Calgary Stampeders: A week after a frightening encounter with a sideline propane heater, Price was back in tremendous form Friday against Edmonton, recording 149 yards and a touchdown on just five catches. The second-year CFL man, a former Charleston Southern Buccaneer (Division I FCS), has been very impressive down the stretch, and could be a crucial weapon for the Stampeders heading into the playoffs.
Honourable mentions for offensive star: Henry Burris, QB, Hamilton; Fred Stamps, SB, Edmonton; Chris Williams, WR, Hamilton.
Second Star: Swayze Waters, kicker, Toronto Argonauts: Waters was absolutely perfect on his kicks Thursday night, nailing all five of his field goal attempts (including the game-winning one that sealed Hamilton's doom) and all four of his extra points. An admirable performance from the man with the best name in the CFL.
Honourable mentions for special-teams star: Mike Renaud, P, Winnipeg; Luca Congi, K, Hamilton; Jovon Johnson, punt returner, Winnipeg.
Third Star: J.C. Sherritt, linebacker, Edmonton Eskimos: Sherritt set the CFL's single-season tackle record Friday, and he did so in style with an 11-tackle, one-sack performance against Calgary. Sherritt has been a crucial playmaker for the Eskimos this season, and he's a deserving nominee as both the team's defensive MVP and as its most outstanding player overall.
Honourable mentions for defensive star: Henoc Muamba, LB, Winnipeg; Adam Bighill, LB, B.C.; Brandon Lang, DE, Edmonton.
Bonus Star/Top Canadian: Henoc Muamba, LB, Winnipeg Blue Bombers. The top pick in the 2011 CFL draft has rounded into an outstanding player for the Bombers this season, and his talents were firmly on display in Saturday's clash with Montreal. That game didn't really mean anything for either side, but Muamba still came to play, recording 10 tackles and a sack. His performances down the stretch are showing him to be not just a good Canadian middle linebacker, but a good middle linebacker, and he seems likely to only get better with time. That could be frightening for the rest of the league.
Honourable mentions for top Canadian: Andy Fantuz, SB, Hamilton; Andrew Harris, RB, B.C.; Luca Congi, K, Hamilton.