Written by: Andrew Parker
Oh, how things change. The leaves are falling, the weather is cooling off, and Winnipeg is receiving devastating injury news. The Blue Bombers kick off your weekend with a game against the Montreal Alouettes, who are just two points behind in the East division standings, and they’re heading into it with several changes.
Last weekend’s loss to the CFL’s bottom-feeding Toronto Argonauts became disappointing beyond just the heartbreakingly close score, after injury updates were released regarding several Bomber essentials. Running back Fred Reid, who is second in the league in rushing yards, and his backup Carl Volny are both finished for the remainder of the season with ACL injuries.
To fill the role of running back, the Bombers have brought Chris Garrett up from the practice roster. Garrett saw some playing time last season, recording his best game when he filled in for an injured Reid. He finished that game with over 100 yards, rushing and receiving combined. For Garrett, getting back into the mix is definitely an opportunity.
“It’s always unfortunate whenever you lose someone to injury, but it also gives me a great opportunity to show what I can do and I’m looking forward to that. I’m very confident in my ability and I know I can help out this offence,” said Garrett.
Another big difference will be that Buck Pierce will be out for Friday’s game to provide recovery time for his bruised ribs. Alex Brink will be taking over, and as head coach Paul LaPolice says, it’s a difficult situation but they have a solution.
“Injuries in this profession are the one thing that you can’t control and that’s why you spend your year bringing in guys you feel can help you out in times like this. Alex has shown a ton of progress since he got his first start last year and we’re very confident he’ll be able to get the job done. That’s why he’s here. This is an important game for our football team as it could potentially determine the season series. We’ve beaten them once already this year so we know that we can do it again,” said LaPolice.
Brink has played in several games already this season, and the shortest glance at the statistics shows his improvement. So far this season he’s thrown two touchdowns and rushed for three more, and he’s ready to pilot the offence tomorrow.
“It’s an important game for us as a team and I’m not thinking about it any other way. I feel like I’ve progressed a lot over the last year and I’m ready to lead this team on Friday. I have a lot of trust in our receivers and the rest of our offence so I’ll have lots of help out there. I’m looking forward to just taking the field and doing what I can to help this team win,” said Brink.
Meanwhile, Alouettes quarterback Anthony Calvillo has been cleared of concussion symptoms and is expected to start the game, hoping to continue the success from their win over Edmonton last week.
The game starts Friday at 6:30 PM at Canad Inns Stadium.