Stamps' Taylor relishes special teams competition with Owens

Ben Fisher, Staff

11/22/2012 10:38:19 AM

Chad Owens has the record-breaking stats and accolades, but he isn't the only electrifying return man itching to light up the field at Rogers Centre come Grey Cup Sunday.

Larry Taylor, the Calgary Stampeders' veteran returner, amassed more than 1,500 combined return yards and was twice named Special Teams Player of the Week. Taylor said that with both himself and Owens on display returning kicks at the 100th Grey Cup, fans are in for a treat.

"Ultimately, the fans get the ice cream and the cake. Two good returners gives you a lot of excitement and that's what the CFL is all about," the 27-year-old Connecticut product said ahead of Sunday's big game.

This will be Taylor's third Grey Cup appearance after suiting up for the Montreal Alouettes in the championship game in both 2008 and 2009, earning a ring in '09. After five years in the league, he says the comparisons between him and Owens are bound to happen.

"It's been going on for some time now between Owens and I," Taylor laughed. "It's one of those situations I don't pay too much attention to."

But while it may be a competition between the two men, it's definitely a friendly one. Taylor says he and Owens have known each other both in and out of football for a long time.

"We are good friends on and off the field. It's just that type of situation: two electrifying players, both of us can get the fans going, give them some excitement on the field. I just look at it to do my job on my team and I'm sure he looks at it with the same approach – just to do his job."

And with his friendship to Owens, Taylor is put in a tricky position picking his favourite for Most Outstanding Player. The former Most Outstanding Special Teams Player said he's sticking with his teammate, Jon Cornish, but added he thinks both players are worthy.

"I definitely want to see my teammate be victorious, but hats off to both of those guys. They both had an amazing season, they accomplished some things that are very unique to accomplish."

"Both guys deserve it in my mind. At the end of the day, there can only be one winner, but that doesn't take away from the other guy who ends up holding up that trophy. They're both victorious in my eyes."

On Sunday however, Taylor's sole focus will be on the return game, and bringing the excitement both he and Owens have come to be counted on for.

"You want to see big returns, and plays that change the momentum of the game. What better place than the 100th Grey Cup where we can just go out there and light it up; may the best team be victorious."

Coverage of the 100th Grey Cup begins Sunday at 1pm et/10am pt on TSN.