Future looks Brightful

IAN BUSBY -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 10:00 AM ET

Sitting at home in Washington the past few weeks, Lamont Brightful had a sunny outlook on his career.

The second-year CFLer was cut by the Montreal Alouettes after training camp, despite being the starting safety for the final part of the season and the playoffs.

But the emergency call came early this week from the Calgary Stampeders and the import defensive back jumped into practice trying to quickly learn the playbook.

"I was already working on some things for post-football," said Brightful.

"But I was staying positive and working out, hoping for a phone call. It came three weeks later and here I am.

"I'm just trying to learn to the best of my ability so that if I get called upon, whether it's this week or next week, then I'll be ready."

The Stamps mixed up their secondary this week, cutting Jermaine Chatman and Brandon Haw and signing Brightful and former NFLer Dwaine Carpenter.

To further add to the problem is starting halfback Calvin Bannister is out with a rib injury. Neither Brightful nor Carpenter are expected to start this week but both should dress and are able contribute if needed.

Brightful was surprised to be released this spring after supplanting Richard Karikari as the Alouetttes starting safety last season. Safety isn't Brightful's natural position because he sees himself more of a corner guy, but he was a full-time returner during his three seasons in the NFL.

He could be given a chance at returns with the Stamps because Bannister also doubles as the kick returner.

Brightful still holds the Baltimore Ravens record for longest punt return. He had a 95-yard touchdown against Cincinnati during his rookie season of 2002.

"I had a few long returns in that league. I remember it vividly," Brightful said. "The kicker outbooted his coverage and I had to retreat to the five.

"I didn't realize I was that far deep. I thought for sure I could get to the 20 but then I got an excellent block and the hole opened. I just took it up the sideline.

"The last guy was double-teamed, I went by him and I could feel the guys nipping at my heels. I just took it in from there."

HOPKINS PUNISHED

The CFL has disciplined Stampeders equipment manager George Hopkins for his bottle-throwing incident last week against the Argonauts but the league nor the team will disclose exactly what the punishment was.


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