The Green and Gold are back on home turf for the first time this year on Saturday (May 27), 2 p.m. kickoff), when the Edmonton Elks host the Winnipeg Blue Bombers for a CFL pre-season tilt at Commonwealth Stadium.
Saturday’s matinee is the final tune-up for the Elks before they open the 2023 CFL season on June 11 at home against the Saskatchewan Roughriders and will also mark the Edmonton debut for some of the Green and Gold’s biggest offseason acquisitions.
Star receivers Eugene Lewis (2022 CFL East Division Most Outstanding Player) and Steven Dunbar (2022 CFL East All-Star) are among the Elks newcomers expected to see action, as the veteran playmakers continue working to build chemistry with quarterbacks Taylor Cornelius and Tre Ford, who both will also be seeing action for the first time in 2023.
“We’ve got a bunch of really high character guys that you don’t have to motivate to be great,” says Elks head coach and general manager Chris Jones. “They’re doing everything they can do; they’re watching all the extra film, they’re getting together, and that’s what it takes to be a great football team.”
On the defensive side of the ball, defensive back Loucheiz Purifoy (2022 CFL All-Star) will tug on the Green and Gold for the first time, as he also becomes acclimated with his new teammates, including fellow 2022 CFL All-Star, longtime Elks defensive lineman Jake Ceresna.
He’s not just doing it for our team. He’s not just doing it for our city. He’s doing it for our country 🇨🇦
— Edmonton Elks (@GoElks) May 25, 2023
Edmonton is coming off a 29-24 loss to the Calgary Stampeders in its first pre-season game, at McMahon Stadium on Monday (May 22). A number of Elks rookies shined in defeat, including receiver Maurice Ffrench (10 catches, 119 yards, one touchdown) and running back Shannon Brooks (11 carries for 72 yards).
The final pre-season game is as crucial for players looking to earn a spot on the roster as it is for veterans getting back into the swing of things.
“This week for me is just being consistent and showing I can do it again, and keeping that kind of energy and bringing it to the offense so we can score points,” Ffrench says.
THE COUNTDOWN TO KICKOFF IS ON
The 2023 CFL season is rapidly approaching. Be there Sunday, June 11 at Commonwealth Stadium when the Edmonton Elks open the season against the Saskatchewan Roughriders. It’s the start of a summer full of family, fun and football. Being part of the action has never been more affordable, with tickets starting at just $15. Click here to get your tickets to the Home Opener and be part of the tradition.
Elks Football…Our Team. Our City.