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Argos say medical staff saw no indication of Kelly injury during, after East final


NIAGARA FALLS, Ont. — The Toronto Argonauts say their medical personnel didn't see any indication star quarterback Chad Kelly suffered a head injury during the East Division final.

On Wednesday, Kelly suggested to 3DownNation — a website that covers Canadian football — that he suffered head trauma during Toronto's 38-17 loss Saturday to the Montreal Alouettes.

In a statement Thursday, the Argos said not only did their medical personnel not see any indication of injury, they weren't made aware of an injury during or after the contest.

"The football club was first made aware of Chad’s injury Wednesday night during a CFL awards media availability," the Argos said. "The organization takes head injuries very seriously and all precautions are being taken with Chad and all our players to make sure they are healthy."

Montreal registered nine turnovers in the game (four interceptions, four on downs, fumble recovery) with Kelly accounting for five (the picks and fumble). The Alouettes returned two interceptions for touchdowns.

On Thursday night, Kelly was named the CFL's top player at the league's awards banquet at Fallsview Casino & Resort.

He received the George Reed Most Outstanding Player Award, now named after the former Saskatchewan Roughriders' star who died last month at age 83. Afterwards, Kelly said he spoke Wednesday with Argos medical personnel about his injury.,

"They're just making sure I'm OK," he said. "I need to come in and take some tests and just make sure everything is OK."

Toronto head coach Ryan Dinwiddie, who was named the CFL's coach of the year, said he didn't learn about Kelly's injury until Thursday morning.

"I didn't know anything about that," he said. "I know Chad is a tough kid and if he had one, he was probably going to keep it to himself and make sure he finished the full 60 minutes.

"Had I know that, we definitely wouldn't have let him play. We've got to be more careful as far as head injuries ... I'm sure Chad felt a certain way with the head injury and kept it from us but us as a football club, we didn't know too much about it."

Dinwiddie said he hadn't spoken to Kelly about the situation Thursday. When asked why he kept the injury from the Argos, Kelly said at the time he just wanted to get home.

"I just think that after the game is over with, you just want to go home and figure out what just happened," Kelly said. "And spend time with the people you care for and want to be with."

As for how he feels now, Kelly said: "I feel good."

The loss to Montreal was an abrupt ending to a stellar year for Kelly and the Argos. Kelly won 15 of 16 starts and threw for 4,123 yards with 23 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.

Toronto (16-2) tied a CFL record for most wins while establishing a franchise best.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 16, 2023.