Burnt but in the game

JONATHAN HUNTINGTON -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 8:51 AM ET

Slowly but surely, life continues to improve for Pat Woodcock.

On the football field, it appears he will play this weekend for the Edmonton Eskimos - returning punts and running receiver routes.

And off the field, he has returned to his home that was damaged in the massive south-side blaze on July 21.

"We are back in," said Woodcock on living at home again.

"It is not all fixed yet.

"There is still quite a bit of work to be done, but that is all right. At least we are home."

Woodcock still doesn't have some windows in his home.

"We have got some boarded up on the ground floor and just plastic (covered) upstairs," he said.

There is also the smell of smoke still in the home and some siding still needs to be replaced.

At work, Woodcock believes he will be returning punts on Saturday at Commonwealth Stadium against the Stampeders.

He hasn't done that since 2001 in the CFL. But he doesn't seem worried about rust.

"I have always kind of been the second or third guy (on a team's depth chart) so I catch them (return ball) all the time (in practice)," reasoned Woodcock.

The veteran non-import realizes the most important aspect of returning is actually catching the ball, something Tyler Ebell had trouble with last week - explaining why he has been yanked from that job.

As for the knee injury that has kept him off the roster since the end of Week 2, Woodcock believes he will be fine.

FINISH LINES: Defensive tackle Ron Warner has been excused from practice because of a death in the family. He could be gone the entire week.


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