Darian Durant on pace to set history of his own

Riders pivot feeling as confident as ever
Reported by Joel Gasson
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While Roughriders running back Kory Sheets continues to eat up the headlines and attention, quarterback Darian Durant is quietly putting together his best season to date and one that could see him set a little bit of team history as well.

Last year Durant did not throw an interception through the team's first three game and seemed to be putting it all together. While he played well the rest of the season, it wasn't quite at the same level. So far this year, Durant appears to be keeping that play going. His 15 touchdowns lead the league, five more than his closest competitor. Those 15 touchdowns over six games (remember, he missed one game) have Durant on pace to set a new single season record for touchdowns in a season with 45, 10 more than Kent Austin in 1992.

So how to explain the success so far?

"His quarterback coach," joked his quarterback coach Khari Jones. "No, I'm kidding. He's just comfortable right now."

Right now Durant is comfortable with just about every aspect of the game: his reads, the routes, the receivers, his legs, and more.

Part of that confidence is certainly due to the array of talent that has been assembled around Durant this year, all under the watchful eye of offensive coordinator George Cortez. It's given Durant the opportunity to spread the wealth, as no receiver has led the Riders two weeks in a row so far this season.

Because of that, Durant is putting much less pressure on himself than he normally would.

"I think the supporting cast is as good as it's ever been," said Durant. "That's allowed me to not have to try and do too much."

Trying to do too much is definitely something that Durant could have been found guilty of in the past, especially during his wild-running gunslinger days. Now he lets his teammates do a lot more work and doesn't feel the need to do it all himself.

"All quarterbacks change as they mature, as they get a little older and see the game," said Jones.

There's an old saying you have to be good to be lucky and lucky to be good. That saying has applied to Durant at times this year as he's had a couple of interceptions that were undone thanks to some help. One was called back against Toronto because of a pass interference call while the other was an obvious pick dropped by Stampeders defensive back Keon Raymond.

"Luck has to be on your side also," said Durant. "I've been nowhere near perfect but I think when you're playing well and thing are going your way and you're doing good things on an off the field good things happen."

Durant's start doesn't only mean good things for him. It's also opened up a world of opportunity for Sheets and the rest of the offense as well.

"You just know if you get to the right spot when you're supposed to be there, you're going to get the ball," said receiver Chris Getzlaf.

Whether Durant makes history this year or not doesn't really matter in the grand scheme of things but despite everything that has changed on this team, one thing hasn't. This team will only go as far as Durant will take them. While he has the chance to do something special, which is noteworthy and probably should have been more widely-recognized than it has been so far, that's more or less been the story of Durant's career.