Harris warms up to the idea of preparation

JONATHAN HUNTINGTON

, Last Updated: 7:42 AM ET

There is a new twist in the Edmonton Eskimos' struggling running game.

AJ Harris has returned to taking some first-team reps with the offence this week.

This comes after he missed last Saturday's game in Regina while on the one-game injured list.

The club has now revealed that Harris suffered a quad injury during the first day of practice last week.

Already recovered from an MCL sprain earlier this fall, Harris was almost constantly running around the field yesterday when not in practice drills to keep his previously tweaked quad muscle loose enough.

Call it a lesson learned for the rookie tailback.

"I had been chillin' and relaxin' and I got called into a drill and I wasn't ready for it," said Harris on how he suffered the quad injury last week in practice.

Now that he has learned the importance of being warmed up properly, Harris might get the starting assignment when the Eskimos play the Montreal Alouettes Friday at Commonwealth Stadium (7 p.m., CHED, TSN) in the final regular-season game.

Calvin McCarty - last week's tailback starter - also received some first-team work at yesterday's practice.

Harris is averaging 5.6-yards per carry while McCarty is at 5.9 yards.

QUICK HITS: AFTER BEING BENCHED FOR THE THIRD TIME THIS YEAR LAST WEEK, BRANDON GUILLORY WILL LIKELY PLAY FRIDAY, REPLACING INJURED JIM DAVIS.

Guillory is taking first-team reps at defensive end in practice.

Davis is out of commission for likely two weeks with a sprained ankle from last Saturday in Regina.

The good news for Davis is that the X-rays on his damaged ankle showed no broken bones.

DODGING BULLET: EDMONTON DEFENSIVE BACK LENNY WILLIAMS RETURNED TO PRACTICE YESTERDAY, ONE DAY AFTER SUFFERING A SHOULDER INJURY IN A PRACTICE DRILL.

Fortunately for Williams, he didn't suffer significant damage after tearing a pectoral muscle in Week 2 and spending nine weeks on the injured list.

Williams didn't participate in every portion of yesterday's practice.

His status for Friday is up in the air.

STAMPS STILL SIDELINED: FRED STAMPS IS STILL NOT WITH THE FIRST-TEAM OFFENCE AFTER INJURING HIS ANKLE ON OCT. 4 AGAINST WINNIPEG.

Watching practice yesterday, Stamps has missed three straight games - but is getting close to returning.

"If Friday was a playoff game, we would play Fred," said head coach Danny Maciocia on his receiver.

"But I want Fred as close as possible to 100%."

Unless Stamps makes a real solid case to play Friday to get his timing in fine shape with quarterback Ricky Ray, he likely sits until the East Division semifinal in Winnipeg on Nov. 8.

FINISH LINES: DEFENSIVE BACK JORDAN YOUNGER RETURNED TO PRACTICE YESTERDAY AFTER AN ANKLE INJURY IN REGINA LAST WEEK ... MIDDLE LINEBACKER AGUSTIN BARRENECHEA JUST WATCHED DEFENSIVE DRILLS YESTERDAY, WHICH IS BECOMING A REGULAR HABIT AT LEAST ONCE A WEEK. THE CLUB HASN'T REVEALED WHY BARRENECHEA IS MISSING PRACTICE TIME IN THE SECOND HALF OF THE YEAR.


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