Dubuc tradin' places

DEREK VAN DIEST -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 10:43 AM ET

Deitan Dubuc was back on the field yesterday and got through practice pain free.

That's was enough to get the fullback-turned-slotback excited.

After missing the first 10 days of camp with a foot injury, Dubuc took part in his third practice with the Eskimos.

"I'm actually pain free, so I'm very excited," Dubuc said. "I've been doing cuts and running routes everywhere and I feel nothing, so I'm very excited about that."

A NEW POSITION

Dubuc didn't play in Friday's exhibition game against the Calgary Stampeders. Having only had two days of practice prior to the game, the Montreal native was not ready, especially considering he's playing a new position this season.

"I was a tight end in the NFL and in college at Michigan," he said. "I was a slotback before that in Quebec. I've never played the receiver position, but tight end is similar, you just line up differently. But I'm very excited. I haven't been this light since 1997. I feel good and my body feels good and I finally got that step back when I run."

Dubuc lost 25 pounds for his new role. The six-foot-four, 225-pound slotback went on a low carb, high protein diet in order to lose the weight.

"After the season because of my foot injury I didn't do anything for two months, so in January, I was 250-pounds," Dubuc said. " I was on a very strict diet, low carbs and high protein and I lost 25 pounds doing that. I was exciting to come back and start practising and eating carbs again."

With Mike Maurer and Daniel Bertrand penciled in as the Eskimos top two fullbacks, Dubuc was told in the off-season he was going to be moved.

"It's an adjustment for him," said Eskimos head coach Danny Maciocia. "He had to drop some weight to play it. We see him as a Jason Clermont type player. If he can do the things for us that Jason is doing in B.C., it'll be good."

Last year Dubuc did not have a single reception coming out of the backfield.

But as a tight end on the Seattle Seahawks and Carolina Panthers practice squads, he's familiar with the passing game.

"I'm not going to be a shifty guy that tries to avoid tackles and tries to beat people with speed," he said.

"I'm going to be a physical receiver that can go across the middle and make the tough catches. That's what my game is going to be about so I hope they are able to use me in that way."

His foot injury - essentially an inflammation - set Dubuc back coming into camp. However with a new offensive coordinator and the entire team having to learn a new playbook, it wasn't as far back as it could have been.

"That was a blessing. But because of the 10 days that I did miss, I have to play catch-up again," he said. "But now I'm here trying to keep learning and trying to keep up with everybody else."

PLAYING THURSDAY?

Dubuc is not sure yet whether he'll be able to play in Thursday's exhibition game against the B.C. Lions at Commonwealth Stadium. But for now his main concern is getting comfortable in his new position.

"You need to be aware of a lot more things," he said. "You need to be aware of everyone else around you and because of the formation change, you have to know what people are doing on the other side also because sometimes you have to line up on the other side. There is a lot more verbiage, a lot more things to know, the whole offensive concepts. The fullback position was a lot more simple."


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