Sunday’s game was one many thought would never come for Riders’ receiver Rob Bagg.
The Riders’ win over the Montreal Alouettes was career game number 100 for the undrafted Queen’s product.
“(I’m) just extremely grateful that both the Riders and myself kept believing,” said Bagg.
The odds of Bagg playing in 100 career games as an undrafted player are pretty low. That’s especially true of undrafted players who opt to go back to school after their first training camp in the CFL.
What made matters worse for Bagg were knee injuries that wiped out a good portion of his career.
“(I) pretty much missed 36 games straight in the middle of that. That was extremely difficult to handle,” he said.
“(I’m) thankful for such an amazing organization to stick with me and believe I could come back.”
In 2013, it appeared that Bagg’s career was in jeopardy again when he was down on the turf at Mosaic Stadium in August. Everyone was expecting the worst but hoping for the best.
As it turned out, the news was the best-possible outcome as Bagg only suffered a sprain and he returned to the field a few weeks later.
Since then, Bagg has never looked back and is playing some of the best football in his career. In that game against Montreal, the 30-year-old set a new career best with his sixth touchdown of the season when he caught a pass from quarterback Kevin Glenn early in the first quarter.
“I do feel like I’m playing at a high level,” said Bagg.
“Obviously, playing slotback creates some new opportunities too. The situation is never the same.”
What Bagg has gone through to get to this point continues to inspire current and aspiring football players everywhere.
His young teammates certainly take a lot from Bagg every day.
“I watch Robbie every single day. I enjoy coming to practice with him every single day. He brings great energy, he practices really hard,” said receiver Ryan Smith.
“Being a second-year guy in this league, you really try to model that. It’s been a privilege to have him as my teammate.”
If you asked the coaches if they could have just one player to model the rest of their team after, Bagg is probably someone that would appear on that list.
“You’ll never hear me say anything about Rob. Rob’s just a character individual. He just works hard at all times,” said interim head coach Bob Dyce.
Bagg did take a hard hit in that game on Sunday but he’s currently feeling fine.
NEWS AND NOTES
Linebacker Jake Doughty and offensive lineman Levy Adcock are eligible to return from the six-game injured list this week. Wednesday’s practice was closed to the public, so it’s unclear at this point if either will play. Dyce did say they are healthy enough to play and it gives them options for Saturday’s game.
Receiver Chris Getzlaf’s future is still unknown. Dyce said that the Regina product is doing well but there wasn’t a timetable for a potential return this season.