Noel says 'no way' to using Fleming's locker

JONATHAN HUNTINGTON -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 11:22 AM ET

Noel Prefontaine doesn't want any part of Sean Fleming's old locker at Commonwealth Stadium.

The Edmonton Eskimos new punter/kicker actually asked to be moved from Fleming's old stall in the club's locker room this spring and is now sitting in Robert Brown's former spot.

"I believe you respect guys that play in a place for a long time," said Prefontaine, who came to Edmonton via a trade with Toronto before training camp opened.

"And I have a respect for him as a player. (Fleming) was an Eskimo his entire career.

"That is his locker, his shrine.

"And God forbid another kicker go into it."

Fleming played in Edmonton - handling the punting/kicking chores - for the better part of 16 years before retiring last fall.

Prefontaine has huge shoes to fill and is definitely watching his steps around the organization.

Another example came in the first few days after he joined the team and didn't ask for No. 1 - his old number in Toronto, but also Warren Moon's number in this city.

As for his play on the field, head coach Danny Maciocia hasn't asked or ordered Prefontaine to stay out of the line of fire on special-teams plays.

That is somewhat surprising considering the 34-year-old suffered two concussions last year, with lingering symptoms until this winter.

"I will cut back," said Prefontaine on his desire to stick his nose in on special teams tackles.

"My importance to a team is me kicking the ball, not hitting people. But it's hard (to cut back tackling) because it is always the way I have played the game."

So, expect the gutsy kicker to still be taking some physical chances.


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