Vaughn vows he'll be back

Gerald Vaughn hated sitting out the Renegadesí victory over the Stampeders in Calgary. (Tony...

Gerald Vaughn hated sitting out the Renegadesí victory over the Stampeders in Calgary. (Tony Caldwell, Sun Media file photo)

DON BRENNAN -- Ottawa Sun

, Last Updated: 8:02 AM ET

In his three years with the Renegades, Gerald Vaughn has been a defensive back, a linebacker, a special teams missile and a team leader. Against the Calgary Stampeders Friday, he was forced to play cheerleader. And he wasn't exactly crazy about it.

Vaughn, in his 12th CFL season, was kept out of the lineup in a must-win game to rest a right knee in which he suffered a strained MCL way back on July 29.

While he was focused on the victory, yesterday Vaughn admitted it was hard not having a bigger role in it.

"I definitely could have played," said the 34-year-old, who was told on the first day of last week's practices he was being shuttled to the sideline. "It bothered me a little bit that I didn't. But they brought me on the road so I tried to do what I could to keep my teammates up. That's the only reason I can see for me being there.

"It will do me no good to bitch and complain (about not playing). They call the shots and that was the right one, this time. They came out with a win. But I felt I could have made a difference. I hate missing games, especially when I think I can go. But we've got some young guys who can get the job done, and they played well."

The Renegades defence, in fact, played very well. Particularly effective was defensive end Anthony Collier, who dressed for his first CFL game and forced a key, late-third quarter fumble.

Coach Joe Paopao jokingly referred to Collier as his "secret weapon," but confirmed he'd have to find a way to get him in the lineup again.

Paopao also was full of praise for rookie lineman John Turntine, who pitched in with an outstanding performance. Turntine, who had five tackles, a sack and a pass knockdown, banged up his knee but should be fine for this weekend's game in Saskatchewan. Out for certain will be defensive back Byron Capers, who suffered a torn quad versus the Stamps and will be out 2-4 weeks.

Also on the limp is veteran receiver Yo Murphy, who banged his hip hard on the last play of the game. While Murphy was walking gingerly yesterday, Paopao said that on a scale from 1-10, it's an eight Murphy will be good to go against Saskatchewan.

It looks like SB Pat Woodcock (toe) and OG Mike Sutherland (ankle) will miss another game, and MLB Tony White and DE Kai Ellis will also remain on the shelf.

There is a chance S Shawn Gallant could be ready to return from a knee injury, but if not this week then he will be able to go Oct. 9 against Saskatchewan.

Meanwhile, asked if he'd be back in the lineup this week, Vaughn replied: "No doubt. If they kick the ball off, I'll be in."

As for the mental health of the team, Paopao said morale was boosted by the victory.

"Winning solves a lot of things," he said. "It's a step. But we don't want to get ahead of ourselves. We have a bigger game (this week). It's step two."

don.brennan@ott.sunpub.com


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