One of the big differences in Canadian football is the goalposts being at the front of the end zone rather than the rear. It occasionally leads to pick plays and dangerous collisions, but more frequently, it leads to big returns off missed field goals. One such return happened Saturday, when the Edmonton Eskimos’ Hugh O’Neill missed a 42-yard field goal, and the Toronto Argonauts’ Martese Jackson took it back 125 yards for a touchdown:
This is why you don't miss field goals…
— TSN (@TSN_Sports) September 16, 2017
This is some great agility by Jackson (a former Florida Atlantic running back and kick returner who’s in his first CFL season and has shone as a returner in particular), and he displays some excellent body control to stay in bounds down the sideline. He also shows off impressive straight-line speed. Of course, it’s easier to pull off a big return on a missed field goal than a punt or a kickoff, as a lot of the opposing players are linemen (in to block for the FG) rather than cover specialists, but that’s just one more reason missed field goals can be fun.
While we do occasionally see these plays in the NFL and the NCAA as well, it’s pretty rare there. A post-Kick Six piece in 2013 from AL.com said there had only been four such plays in the past four decades at the NCAA Division I FBS level. This still isn’t an every-game occurence in the CFL, but it does happen pretty regularly in that league thanks to those moved-up goal posts, and it’s always enjoyable to watch see when it does. And this was a key part of the Argos’ eventual 34-26 win.
[TSN on Twitter]