Preview: Austin Mack returns for Thanksgiving matchup against Redblacks

The Alouettes (8-7) will be taking on the Ottawa Redblacks (4-11) in an incredibly important game at Percival Molson Stadium on Monday. An Als victory wouldn’t allow them to clinch a home playoff game just yet because Hamilton beat Saskatchewan on Saturday night, but it would allow them to stay two points ahead of the Tiger-Cats. Reminder: The Als have won the season series against the Ticats, which is the tiebreaker.

Return of the Mack:

After a one-game absence, receiver Austin Mack (thigh) will return to the lineup on Monday against the Redblacks. The 26-year-old has 70 receptions for 1057 yards and four touchdowns in his first CFL season. In two games against Ottawa, Mack has posted 120 and 116 yards receiving. He has rattled off five 100-yard games this season, and he has posted at least 70 yards eight times this season.

Fletcher in for Stanback:

Walter Fletcher will be back in the lineup for William Stanback, who is dealing with an illness. Stanback didn’t practice on Friday and Saturday.

Fletcher hasn’t been in the lineup since Sep. 15 when the Alouettes hosted the Argonauts.

The 26-year-old’s best game came on Aug. 11 against the Saskatchewan Roughriders when he rushed for 73 yards while adding a 68-yard reception for a touchdown.

The Alouettes running game, in general, has been very effective as of late. In the last two games (both victories), Stanback has rushed for 81 and 85 yards. Quarterback Cody Fajardo added three more carries for 23 yards last week in Ottawa.

Several changes to the lineup:

Last week’s victory at TD Place came at a cost, as a few key players suffered injuries during that game.

The first change will come at kicker, as David Cote will miss the game with a hip injury. Jose Maltos, who has been patiently waiting on the practice roster all season, will make his Alouettes debut on Monday afternoon.

As you may remember, Maltos went 5-for-5 in a preseason game in Ottawa back on May 26th. He also made a 42-yard kick with no time remaining to give the Als a 22-21 victory that night.

Prior to joining the Als this season, the 32-year-old was with the Redblacks.

Linebackers Avery Williams and Bryce Notree, receiver Kaion Julien-Grant, and safety Zach Lindley have also been added to the one-game injured list.

The Redblacks:

The Alouettes will be looking to go a perfect 4-0 against Ottawa this season. This will be the final matchup between the two sides.

Ottawa will be without defensive end Lorenzo Mauldin (neck) for this game against the Alouettes. The reigning defensive player of the year has five sacks and 26 defensive tackles in 15 games this season.

A loss on Monday would officially eliminate the Redblacks from playoff contention.