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Calgary Stampeders offensive lineman Jeff Pilon wants to play Friday against the B.C. Lions but the...

Calgary Stampeders offensive lineman Jeff Pilon wants to play Friday against the B.C. Lions but the arrival of his first child may change his plans. (Calgary Sun File/Darren Makowichuk)

IAN BUSBY -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 8:11 AM ET

Although Jeff Pilon's knee has healed, the Calgary Stampeders offensive lineman still may not play in this week's crucial West Division showdown.

Pilon's wife, Kelly, should give birth to the couple's first child any day now.

The veteran hopes it happens before the team is scheduled to leave for Vancouver Thursday.

Friday's matchup against the B.C. Lions would be Pilon's first start since his right knee was surgically repaired Sept. 7.

The five games Pilon has sat out were the first ones he has missed since the 2001 Grey Cup, when he tore his ACL at the end of the regular season.

"I'm never going to miss this, I don't care for what. I'm not missing my kid's birth," Pilon said.

Although no one would begrudge Pilon for skipping the game to help his wife in childbirth, Pilon is nevertheless tired of watching the Stamps play and not being involved.

His perspective has obviously changed since the last time he sat out with a knee injury.

"Standing on the sidelines at that (2001) Grey Cup, I swore I would never miss a game again for any reason," said Pilon.

"What really bothers me (watching from the sidelines) is the potential this team has. We don't want to get ahead of ourselves but we have Grey Cup potential.

"That's down the road and I want to be part of it.

"I need to have my name on the Grey Cup," he continued, possibly forgetting players' names are not engraved upon the CFL's championship trophy.

"When you haven't missed a game in a while and you see teammates fighting for a common goal,

I want to contribute and be part of that.

"It's hard being on the sidelines and missing that."

Pilon spent his own money to join the Stamps in Toronto last weekend for what turned out to be an emotional loss to the Argonauts.

The 30-year-old Ottawa product spent some time with family in Hogtown but he also felt it was important to be with the team.

He practised last week but had pegged the B.C. game as his return date.

"As soon as you don't have your face around and don't keep involved, it's almost like you get faded out," Pilon said.

"I didn't want that to happen."

While Pilon was out, third-year Stampeder Tyler Lynem stepped in and did a decent job at right tackle.

During home games and the contest in Toronto, Pilon would watch from the sidelines and offer advice for Lynem in between offensive series.

Experience helps more on the offensive line than any other position. Pilon saw the Argos disguising blitzes and messing with Lynem, a converted d-lineman.

"He hasn't been around that long to read what they were setting up," Pilon said.

"I could see what they were doing. They were bringing speed a couple of times. I've played against all these guys a few times so I know what their favourite moves are going to be.

"I tried to help him start playing mind games with them because they were trying to play mind games."


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