Central focus for Stamp

IAN BUSBY -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:22 AM ET

Being the centre of attention isn't as important to John Comiskey as just being the Calgary Stampeders centre.

With the third-year offensive lineman out for most of training camp after suffering an ankle injury, the entire offence struggled at times.

The centre is the starting point for the offensive line calls and now that Comiskey is back in his normal position this week, the flow of information is back to normal.

"Even though last year was his first in that spot, he meant so much to the offence," said quarterback Henry Burris.

"When it comes to the exchange, he and I have a relationship that's working well. When he comes out of the huddle, he looks at the front and can recognize it easily.

"That starting five has started to gel together. They've developed it with Comiskey making calls then Jay McNeil and Bobby Singh relaying it through to the tackles.

"It's a pyramid that flows from the centre."

That flow was broken in the final pre-season game.

Comiskey doesn't feel that good about the team struggling without him but is sure happy to back and ready to take on the Hamilton Tiger-Cats tomorrow at McMahon Stadium (8 p.m., CBC).

"It's always nice to feel needed but anybody can be replaced," Comiskey said. "I'm thankful to be out there with my teammates every day I can.

"It's tough when you're out for two weeks because people start to wonder about you. But my teammates were confident in each other. We're a real tight group. It's like I haven't skipped a beat."

At the start of the 2006 season, Godfrey Ellis was the Stampeders centre, although that wasn't his natural position.

Ellis took over from Jamie Crysdale midway through the previous season and did an admirable job.

But Ellis is more suited to guard and Comiskey stepped early last season to take over the spot.

Under new offensive co-ordinator George Cortez, the centre takes a big role in making sure assignments aren't missed and Comiskey enjoys doing his part to protect Burris.

"This new system, they heavily rely on the centre to direct traffic," Comiskey said.

"We did that last year but it's more this year. It's good for me because there's lot of supporting cast."


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