Former Ram brings speed

IAN BUSBY -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 9:51 AM ET

Terrence Wilkins shagged the punt, scampered through blockers on his way to the endzone, then ran into a wall.

Punter Burke Dales was crossed up with the new Calgary Stampeders returner and the loud collision created a stir at practice yesterday. Just a friendly welcome to the CFL? Dales claims it was an accident.

Wilkins didn't mind. He may be a veteran of six NFL seasons but is the new guy with the Stamps.

"I don't know what he was doing," said Wilkins with a chuckle after his first CFL practice. "That was his way of welcoming me here. That's how it happens sometimes, I guess.

"That would never happen in a game, mind you."

The Stampeders are hoping Wilkins can boost their woeful return game. Calgary has yet to break a punt return longer than 36 yards and a kickoff longer than 32 yards.

Wilkins comes to town with an impressive resume. In 54 NFL games with Indianapolis and St. Louis, he has a solid 22.3-yard average on kickoffs and a 9.1-yard average on punts.

Three times he hit the endzone on special teams, which the Stamps haven't done this year on returns.

The 30-year-old has been out of football for two seasons but feels ready to step in and do some damage.

"I like returning, especially out here where the field is much bigger," Wilkins said. "I won't be going out of bounds because I can still be running."

QB Henry Burris expects Wilkins to also contribute on offence.

"I told him to get ready to be successful up here because we'll get him the ball," Burris said. "When you got a guy with that type of skill, you have to get him the ball because there's too much ability to not do it."

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EXTRA POINTS: Stamps WR Jeremaine Copeland didn't practise yesterday due to his sprained ankle. His status for Monday remains in doubt ... DB Anthony Malbrough sat out for the fourth straight practice with his injured hamstring and seems doubtful to return against Edmonton ... WR Gerald Harris was released to make room on the roster for returner Terrence Wilkins.


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