Hank happy with his targets

DAN TOTH -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 8:26 AM ET

Quarterback Henry Burris is always upbeat but another day of whipping footballs at the collection of receivers in Stampeders camp has the starting quarterback bursting at the seams.

"(Jeremaine) Copeland and Nik (Lewis) are the two obvious guys but the guys who've shown they have the potential to play up here from the States are Ken-Yon Rambo, of course, and MarTay (Jenkins) has shown good speed and ability to make plays," Burris said after yesterday's workouts. "Sulecio (Sanford) has looked very good. He's got good hands. Looking at the Canadians, (Mike) Juhasz is a smart kid with great hands and knows where the holes are and (Denis) Montana has done some good things.

"Big Blake (Machan) is going to be a good part of this offence."

Burris is expected to see plenty of playing time both in the mock game scheduled for Saturday and the first pre-season clash Tuesday against Saskatchewan.

"We need to get some things corrected and I threw some balls I don't need to be throwing," Burris said. "We just need to get on the same page and have confidence in what you're doing. A lot of stuff has been thrown at us in the first three days. We're starting to see things simmer down and guys starting to relax and just playing the game.

"It's a longer process than most people think. Some people say a two-week training camp is enough time but most teams in this league don't peak until mid-way through the season.

"On offence you can't really gel until the final cut is made because after that you know what position everyone will be playing in and we can start talking different strategies."

GETTING THEIR KICKS: All three kickers in camp auditioned under live fire for the first time in yesterday's morning session.

Non-imports P Burke Dales, PK Sandro DeAngelis and P/PK Mark Irvin each took turns trying to impress coach Tom Higgins, although yesterday's efforts suggest the kicking game is still a concern.

Dales hit a couple of solid punts while also offering a couple of wonky efforts.

"We're looking for consistency and we have to put a little pressure on him and we'll get him some game experience as quickly as we can," Higgins said.

DeAngelis, the brightest prospect of the bunch, is still working on his timing but demonstrated a strong leg on kickoffs in the afternoon session.

FANS BUYING IT: Lee Genier, Stampeders v.p. of business development, says the team has sold more than 19,500 paid season tickets and hopes to hit 20,500 by the first home game. That would eclipse by a couple of thousand the paid season ticket numbers from last season.

Genier also reports the team is up some $600,000 in corporate sponsorship from last year.

DROPPING THE BALL: Import receiver MarTay Jenkins, who spent four seasons with the Arizona Cardinals, appears to have his work cut out after dropping a few passes in yesterday's morning session.

He spent the last part of practice having passes whipped at him by the punting machine.

Jenkins, 30, had an over-the-shoulder strike from Jason Gesser fall to the ground after hitting him in the hands. He later dropped another on-target offering from Darnell Kennedy before also losing the handle on a punt return.

EXTRA POINTS: DE Michael Josiah made an impression in one-on-one drills against the o-line ... Import DB Anthony Malbrough strained his hamstring and could be sidelined for a couple of days. Other injuries are: WR Tywan Mitchell (hamstring), OL Godfrey Ellis (knee), WR Brett Ralph (hamstring), LB Jude Waddy (calf) and DB Marcus Stenix (hamstring) ... DB Terrence Moore was released ... Import receiver Ken-Yon Rambo was one of the best on the field yesterday, making a beautiful grab of a Henry Burris pass ... "Today we looked brilliant and tomorrow we could be the village idiots." -- words of wisdom from Tom Higgins.


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