Need for speed in Calgary

RANDY SPORTAK -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 10:56 AM ET

Tyrone Calico's website is www.bigcatchcalico.com.

His hands are only one reason the Calgary Stampeders signed the former Tennessee Titans receiver.

Before being drafted in the third round and making the NFL, the 6-ft.-4, 220-lb. Calico ran the 40-yard dash in 4.34 seconds.

That speed is a big ingredient Stamps head coach John Hufnagel is searching for this coming season.

"I want more big-play ability. That, hopefully, will be out of the receiver position, but it's not guaranteed. Maybe my running back is my big-play guy. Who knows how it's all going to work out?" Hufnagel said. "If you have a very capable, fast receiver, that will be a good thing. And the more capable fast receivers you have on the team, that will be a better thing. It's as simple as that.

"It's not to say I'm displeased with anything -- I don't want to give that impression. Calgary's incumbent receivers are very talented and veteran receivers, and that means a lot to me. But you know the direction where I'd like to go and I'm hoping the way I've structured things, I can afford to gain what I'd like on our roster."

It's worth noting Calico -- whose addition was announced yesterday -- suffered a major knee injury during the 2004 season.

The import receiver also has to clear another hurdle to join the Stamps. Last month, he was arrested for drunk driving and faces indictment.

"They've taken the action so he can come to camp," Hufnagel said. "From our understanding, it should be fine, but you never know until they get to McMahon Stadium."

The Stamps also announced the signing of receivers Chris Jackson, who was on the Toronto Argonauts practice roster last season, and Jessie Burton, a product of University of Tennessee-Martin.

Hufnagel doesn't know yet if Calico still has that speed.

"He's been tested," he said. "When he gets up here, we'll find out how fast he is. From our free agent camp we had at the end of March, we'll have four receivers from that camp -- a couple are yet to be announced -- and they're 4.4, 4.3 guys with return skills.

"I'm pleased with the overall group we have coming to camp. The young guys will show well, and it will be great competition and hopefully very difficult decisions to make."

Hufnagel said he wants to dress four import receivers, and seeing as the club has Jeremaine Copeland, Nik Lewis, Ken-Yon Rambo and free-agent acquisition Nate Curry, it will make an interesting training camp.

It'll quite be possibly an exciting season, too, considering Hufnagel was the man whose offensive game-plans made the Stamps the high-octane club of the 1990s.

EXTRA POINTS

Veteran LB Mike O'Shea re-signed with the Toronto Argonauts yesterday, agreeing to a one-year contract with a club option for the 2009 season. He recorded four sacks, 77 defensive tackles, four special-teams tackles and two forced fumbles last season. O'Shea currently sits third on the CFL's all-time list with 1,083 defensive tackles, trailing only Alondra Johnson (1,084) and Willie Pless (1,241) ... WRs Terrence Edwards and Derick Armstrong re-signed with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. Both contracts are for one year-plus-an-option ... Edmonton Eskimos FB Mike Maurer is retiring after 10 CFL seasons.


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