Toronto Argonauts Acquire Zach Collaros for a Change at Quarterback

zach collaros
HAMILTON, ON - JUNE 13, 2019: Zach Collaros #17 of the Saskatchewan Roughriders gestures towwards Simoni Lawrence (not pictured) of the Hamilton Tiger-Cats during a game at Tim Hortons Field on June 13, 2019. Hamilton defeated Saskatchewan 23-17. (Photo by John E. Sokolowski/Getty Images)

The Saskatchewan Roughriders have traded CFL veteran and former Toronto Argonaut Zach Collaros back to his original team after Collaros spent the last five-plus seasons in Hamilton and Saskatchewan.

The winless Argonauts have been anemic on offence all season. Last week in Edmonton they were shut out for the first time since 2009, and are averaging just 10.5 points per game. Needing a change on offense, they have sent a fourth-round draft pick to the Saskatchewan Roughriders in return for Collaros.

Quarterback Questions Followed Toronto’s 2017 Grey Cup Win

Coming into this season, there were many questions on offense for the Argos.

Ricky Ray hung up the cleats and it left a question at quarterback that was not answered during his injury-filled 2018 season. After the 2017 season, Toronto acquired James Franklin in a trade with the Edmonton Eskimos. But his tenure in Toronto over the past season plus has been beset by injuries and shaky play.

Last season McLeod Bethel-Thompson took over in relief of Franklin and carried over as the starter this season. But thus far in 2019, the results have not been very good. He has thrown nine interceptions to just seven touchdowns and has a passing efficiency of just 79.2.

During last week’s game in Edmonton, things reached a breaking point and Dakota Prukop came in during the second half. While he showed arm talent, it is clear that he is raw and not yet ready to be a starter.

Enter Collaros, the veteran who returns to Toronto; where his career started. He played for the Argos in 2012 and 2013 before spending the next four years in Hamilton. The Roughriders acquired him last season and he threw 13 interceptions and just nine touchdowns in 14 games.

He appeared in one game for Saskatchewan this season, with one carry for seven yards. With Cody Fajardo taking over as the unquestioned starter for the Riders, Collaros became expendable.

Expectations for Zach Collaros

While the Argos have been able to move the ball through the air, as they rank fourth in the league with 292 passing yards per game, they have not been able to finish drives. Pass protection has also been an issue as the 18 sacks given up, third-most in the league.

With Collaros’ history of concussions, the situation upfront may present a risk. But if he can be a steady hand at the position, that has to be considered a success giving the current situation in Toronto.

The Argos host the Winnipeg Blue Bombers on Thursday night, but Collaros likely won’t dress. After a bye week in week nine, Collaros’ first chance to start will come on August 16 at home against the Edmonton Eskimos.

Main image credit: Embed from Getty Images

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