Jokin' with Jyles

SCOTT ZERR -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 8:01 AM ET

Normally when a player struts onto the practice field 17 minutes late, he'd get a tongue-lashing from the coach and teammates.

But Steven Jyles had a good excuse. He had just arrived back in Edmonton from his weekend wedding in Monroe, Louisiana. So instead of finger-pointing, he got a round of applause from the rest of the Eskimos.

"I had a great time. It was a big wedding and we had fun," said Jyles who put a ring on the finger of fiancee Ashley Smith. "These guys here, they treat you like a brother.

"They were congratulating me on the step I made in life."

But after a quick hello to the team, it was back to business.

"The honeymoon's over. Let's go," barked head coach Danny Maciocia.

And Jyles didn't disappoint. The rookie, who is turning heads with his strong arm and quick feet, was firing strikes after barely breaking a warm-up sweat.

"He came out here throwing 60, 70 yards and throwing off the wrong foot,"added Maciocia.

"He's got all the tools - the total package."

Even with all his efforts so far, Jyles hasn't clinched a roster spot. Jyles, Khari Jones and Jason Johnson will all see action on Saturday at Saskatchewan.

When the Roughriders come calling six days later, Ricky Ray will control the offence most of the way and the hopefuls will have limited last chances to impress.

"It'll go down to the wire," said Maciocia.

"It was a concern of mine with Jason (Maas) going to Hamilton, but this team is well-placed regarding the backup quarterback."


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