Photo - Tyler Going of the Okanagan Sun was an All-Canadian linebacker in 2019
The CJFL kicks-off Linebackers Week, a look back at the statistical leaders throughout time in the Canadian Junior Football League.
Arguably the linebacker is often regarded as the most important position on the defensive side of the ball. They are versatile players usually providing hard hits on running plays or are an additional layer of pass defence when required. Linebackers are required to use their judgment on every snap to determine their role during a particular play. They are expected to move proficiently from sideline to sideline as well as keep containment beyond the tackle-box on run plays.
A linebacker is also asked to provide extra pressure on the quarterback during a blitz. They have to be careful not to get burned on an offensive play, but at the same time get into the backfield as quickly as possible.
This position has perhaps the most nicknames associated with it as well. Depending on where the linebacker is positioned on the field they could be called the Mike, Mack, Will, Sam, Buck or Rebel.
Linebackers are usually credited for the most tackles in a game or over the course of a season. Because of their position they are responsible for numerous areas on the field and to the make a tackle once in those areas.
The CJFL has seen many incredible linebackers throughout history. The top 5 tackle leaders over the course of a career are:
1 – Garry Handley – 180 with the Okanagan Sun and Richmond Raiders (BCFC) from 1982-1986
2 – Jean Maurice – 178 with the Sherbrooke Blitz (QMJFL) from 1986-1989
3 – Mike Letendre – 175 with the Okanagan Sun (BCFC) from 1994-1998
4 – Gord Langfield – 169 with the Abbotsford Airforce (BCFC) from 1987-1990
5 – Jeff Alamolhoda – 169 with the Vancouver Trojans and Tri-City Bulldogs (BCFC) from 1999-2002
There will be a new category each day during linebackers week.
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