One heady issue for Stamps

IAN BUSBY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:43 AM ET

George Hopkins has a bucket list and knows exactly what happened with all the flying helmets on Thursday night.

While there were six instances where Calgary Stampeders players lost their lids in the 21-20 victory over the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, only half of them were equipment issues.

Receiver Nik Lewis and Johnny Forzani and running back Jon Cornish all had their helmets come off after absorbing big hits, but Hopkins pinpoints the problem to improper inflation.

"Guys forget when we go to a place with a different altitude," said Hopkins, the longtime Stampeders equipment manager. "The new helmets have a soft liner in them and sometimes it deceives the guys that there is actually air in the helmet.

"We go around and check, saying 'How is your air?' They say it's fine but a couple guys it wasn't fine and they didn't have any air in it.

"It's a correctable thing and it will be corrected."

Hopkins got an e-mail from the league about the helmets coming off and he explained there is sometimes problems he has no control over.

Twice quarterback Henry Burris had his helmet ripped off by Bombers defenders. Once was on an uncalled Doug Brown facemask and the second was on a gang-sack.

"Henry got his flat ripped off and there's nothing we can do about that," Hopkins said.

The sixth instance of a helmet off after a play was receiver Arjei Franklin, who needed some breathing room and quickly discarded his lid after suffering broken ribs.

The Stamps are wearing brand new black lids for road games this season, but the different helmets aren't the issue.

Certainly the most troubling play was the one where Burris was still running away from defenders without a bucket.

"They were head hunting," Burris said. "I took a couple of shots. On one I was able to get my head down before the guy hit.

"You have to make the right adjustments (with the helmets). We will make the adjustments asap. George is doing a great job staying on top of things. He's doing everything he can to keep us safe."

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