Wikipedia:WikiProject Canadian football/Player pages format

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This page provides a recommended format for articles about Canadian football players. Not all articles will slavishly conform to this standard; obviously, superstars such as Warren Moon will have longer and more involved articles than less well-known players (ex. Daryl Stephenson).

Also consult the excellent advice at Wikipedia:WikiProject Biography#Tips for writing biographies.

Naming conventions[edit]

The name of the article should be the most common name of the person that does not conflict with the names of other people. That is, it should be the name that is most generally recognisable and that is unambiguous with the name of other articles. Normally this is simply the first and last name of the player (e.g., Tony Gabriel) but may also be a nickname if that is how the player is best known professionally (e.g., Sonny Homer). If the player overwhelmingly uses a middle name or abbreviation, then the title should reflect that (e.g., J. C. Watts, Darrell K. Smith, Arland Bruce III) however, adding a middle name or initials merely for disambiguation purposes (that is: if this format of the name is not the commonly used one to refer to this person) is not advised.

If the name is shared by another article, e.g. a chemist or actor, then a disambiguation (or "dab") is necessary. Generally, this means adding a qualifier between bracketing parentheses. The qualifier should be as simple and general as possible while still describing the person and not being ambiguous with another article (see Wikipedia:Disambiguation#Naming the specific topic articles). For players of Canadian football, this generally means "(football player)" (e.g., Royal Copeland (football player)).

If, however, there are other football players with the same name, then some thoughtfulness is needed to pick a dab that is suitable for the article. Here are some possible solutions:

  • If the player is most notable for playing in the CFL, then "(CFL player)" is likely a good choice when "(football player)" is insufficient.
  • If the player is notable for play in more than one league and there is more than one football player with the same name, then the position the player plays might be used, e.g. "(cornerback)". This should be avoided as much as possible, since players often change positions.
  • For the extreme case of a player who shares a name with others of the same position, then it may be necessary to use the team, era, or combinations of descriptors in the dab, e.g. "(BC Lions player)", "(1990s quarterback)". This should be avoided as much as possible, since players often change teams and may play in multiple decades.
  • Another possible solution for a player who has played both American and Canadian football and is notable for play in more than one league, but the other football players who share the name played soccer or rugby, may be to use (gridiron player). (See Gridiron football.)
  • It is not desirable to use "(Canadian football player)", both because it is unclear if the adjective "Canadian" refers to the code of football or the player and because players frequently play more than one code of football. Even if the subject is a Canadian player of Canadian football, rendering the ambiguity moot in that case, such a dab suggest that this is a naming convention for players of Canadian football generally, and is likely to confuse readers and editors alike as to the names of other disambiguated articles on players of the sport.

Player infobox[edit]

Use {{Infobox CFL player}} if the player has only played professionally in the CFL. Follow the instructions on the documentation page. The template is currently using {{Infobox Gridiron football person}} in an attempt to share a North American football infobox allowing a single infobox on a player's article who has played for CFL, NFL, and AFL. Should that situation change, however, using {{Infobox CFL player}} will permit an easy changeover to a WikiProject Canadian football solution.

For those who have played in more than one professional league, {{Infobox Gridiron football person}} is the best to use.

Article sections[edit]


The first paragraph should be a very short introduction, including the player's position and notable teams for which he played. Do not say that the player "was" a football player unless he is deceased; rather say that he is a retired football player.

The following is a good example:

Harold Warren Moon (born November 18, 1956) is a former professional American and Canadian football quarterback who played for the Canadian Football League's Edmonton Eskimos and the National Football League's Houston Oilers, Minnesota Vikings, Seattle Seahawks and Kansas City Chiefs. He is currently a broadcaster for the Seattle Seahawks.

Another one to three paragraphs should give a concise overview of the article. Consult Wikipedia:Lead section for a good guideline.

Early life[edit]

This section should be several paragraphs in chronological order from birth and childhood, through high school, and university/amateur career.

Some good examples are Wayne Gretzky#Early years from hockey and Moe Berg#Early life from baseball.

Professional career[edit]

The next section should be in paragraph form and provide an overview of the player's professional career. It should note in which draft the player was drafted (or, if the player was undrafted, the article should note that fact). Drafts should be formatted such as: [[2007 CFL Draft]] and [[2007 NFL Draft]]. When noting the year that player did something in the CFL, use the [[2002 CFL season]] season articles.

If the player played in different leagues or spent significant time on different teams, you may wish to divide the career into subsections such as at Joe Kapp#Professional career or Wayne Gretzky#NHL career.

The following is an example of a good Professional Career section:

In the 1954 season, Parker signed with the Edmonton Eskimos of the Canadian Football League. Nicknamed "Ol' Spaghetti Legs", Parker became one of the most important parts of the Eskimos dynasty of the mid-1950s. Parker played both the defensive and offensive sides of the ball, a practice not so uncommon in his day as it is today; however, his main strength was offence, where he was both a strong runner and an excellent quarterback. This is shown by his CFL Western Division All-Star selections; as a running back in 1954, 1957 and 1959, and as a quarterback in 1955, 1956, 1958, 1960 and 1961. Parker won six consecutive Jeff Nicklin Memorial Trophies as the West Division's most outstanding player from the 1956 season to the 1961 season, and seven in total. He was awarded the Schenley Award as the league's most outstanding player in 1957, 1958 and 1960 and was the runner-up in 1956 and 1961.

During the first three years of his career (1954–1957), the Eskimos won consecutive Grey Cups. In the 1954 Grey Cup, Parker made one of the most famous plays in Grey Cup history when, in the fourth quarter, Ted Tully hit Montreal Alouettes running back Chuck Hunsinger and forced a fumble. Parker recovered the ball and returned it 90 yards for a touchdown, giving the Eskimos, who were a large underdog in the game, a surprise victory. Parker's 90 yard fumble return remains a Grey Cup record to this day.

Following the 1962 season, the Eskimos traded Parker to the Toronto Argonauts for five players and $15,000. Parker played in Toronto from the 1963 CFL season to the 1965 CFL season.

Parker finished his playing career with the BC Lions in the 1968 CFL season when, as an assistant coach, he helped the team out of a difficult mid-season situation by donning the pads for one last go round as quarterback. At the time of his retirement, Parker, who also kicked extra points and field goals, had scored a then CFL record 750 points.


After the Professional career may come an Achievements section. As the major awards, honours, and records should already be listed in the infobox, it is unnecessary to duplicate the list here. If such a section is desirable, however, it would be preferable to write this section in prose rather than in list format and to include some context. Citations do not necessarily have to be major awards (like the CFL's Most Outstanding Player Award or Hec Crighton Trophy), but they do have to be notable. Put them in chronological order, if possible.

It is acceptable to note records the person no longer holds, as long is it is noted who took the record from them, and when the record was taken from them. The records listed can be of any level of notoriety and they can be for a franchise, nation, or league. Be sure and note what type of record (team record, league record, etc.) the person holds, as well as the year in which they were set, if applicable.

The following is an example of a bulleted section:

Some notable honours earned and records set during Smith's twelve-year professional career include:

  • Named to the CFL All-Star Team in 1993
  • CFL Canadian Player of the Week for Week 18, 2003 CFL season
  • CFL record for Most Combined Yards, All-Time Regular Season: 25,438 (19892000 CFL season)
  • CFL record for Most Combined Yards, Regular Season: 3,840 (1997 CFL season)
  • Argonauts team records for career pass receptions (682), punt return yards (6,025), punt returns (610), punt return touchdowns (8), kickoff return yards (6,349), and kickoff returns (300)
  • Argonauts team records for single-season punt return yards (1,070 in 1997), punt returns (111 in 1997), and kickoff returns (49 in 1997)
  • Argonauts team record for single-game kickoff returns (8) on August 21, 1990, versus Edmonton Eskimos

Career statistics[edit]

The next section is a wikitable of the player's statistics. There may be more than one totals section (i.e., for different leagues or level of play) or they may be combined. Please refrain from updating stats mid-season, as it complicates things and Wikipedia's purpose is not to provide up-to-the-date statistics.

Stats for different positions are necessarily different.

The following is an example of a Career Stats entry for a running back (John Avery):

  Rushing   Receiving
Year League Team Att. Yards Avg Long TD Fumbles No. Yards Avg Long TD
1998 NFL Miami 143 503 3.5 44 2 5 10 67 6.7 19 1
1999 NFL Denver 5 21 4.2 11 0 0 4 24 6.0 11 0
2001 XFL Chicago 150 800 5.3 73 5  ? 17 297 17.5 68 2
2002 CFL Edmonton 229 1,448 6.3 61 9 10 45 387 8.6 31 2
2003 NFL Minnesota 1 0 0.0 0 0 1 2 24 12.0 13 1
2004 CFL Toronto 202 974 4.8 74 4 5 48 364 7.6 27 1
2005 CFL Toronto 109 526 4.8 26 2 4 36 393 10.9 46 3
2006 CFL Toronto 82 432 5.3 0 2 1 8 41 5.1 17 0
2007 CFL Toronto 75 327 4.4 0 3 1 7 66 9.4 18 0
Totals 996 5031 5.1 74 27 177 1663 9.4 68 10

Blank version[edit]

  Rushing   Receiving
Year League Team Att. Yards Avg Long TD Fumbles No. Yards Avg Long TD
year league team
year league team


Always cite your sources! No original research!

Every statement can be referenced to a source using <ref>Author, [url title], publisher, page.</ref> in the body of the article and placing a {{Reflist}} template under a References or Notes section.

A bibliography may also be listed in MLA format.

Consult Wikipedia:Citing sources and Wikipedia:Footnotes for more information and Wikipedia:Citation templates for simplifying ref citing.

External links[edit]

Relevant external links such as official websites or team biographies should be included in a bulleted list in an External links section.

Categories used for players[edit]

The main category is Category:Players of Canadian football but nearly all articles should use more precise sub-categories. There are also Category:Canadian Football League coaches (with team sub-categories) and Category:Canadian Football League executives categories.

Most players will have several categories to which they will belong. Each player should have a category for their nationality, position, and for each team that he or she has ever been a member. All CFL and NFL teams have categories as well as most U.S. college teams (Category:College football players in the United States). U Sports players can be listed by team (Category:U Sports football players).

Here are some helpful category trees:

Categories are placed at the bottom of the article and any stub tags are placed below those at the very bottom so they may be easily found and removed when it is no longer a stub. Always place the code {{DEFAULTSORT:family name, given name}} before the categories and stub tags to ensure they are correctly alphabetized in the categories.

Here is an example:

{{DEFAULTSORT:Jackson, Russ}}
[[Category:1936 births]]
[[Category:Living people]]
[[Category:Canadian players of Canadian football]]
[[Category:Canadian football quarterbacks]]
[[Category:Ottawa Rough Riders players]]
[[Category:Toronto Argonauts coaches]]
[[Category:CFL's Most Outstanding Canadian Award]]
[[Category:CFL MOP Award winners]]
[[Category:Grey Cup champions]]
[[Category:Canadian Football Hall of Fame inductees]]
[[Category:McMaster Marauders football players]]
[[Category:Officers of the Order of Canada]]
[[Category:Ontario sportspeople]]
[[Category:People from Hamilton, Ontario]]