Avery still has place with Argos

PERRY LEFKO -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:25 AM ET

John Avery can be an Argo for as long as he wants.

With the arrival of Ricky Williams, Avery apparently has lost his job as the starting tailback.

While Avery has been affected by the arrival of Williams and is not talking to the media, the often-injured veteran is showing his professionalism by working hard on every play and looking the best he has since joining the team in 2004.

And the team is behind him.

"Our decision is that John Avery is an Argo for as long as John Avery wants to be an Argo," said team co-owner David Cynamon, who spoke to Avery yesterday. "This is a unique situation. This does not show (negatively) on John and the way we feel about John whatsoever. We want John here. Ricky Williams is here for one year.

"John Avery is the future. Unless John begged us for another situation, we have no interest in moving John Avery. We also love him as a player and a person."

FANS OUT IN FORCE

Daniel Harrison, 17, and his twin brother David attended Argos practice to see Williams. Both brothers were wearing Miami Dolphins jerseys with No. 34 and Williams' name on the back.

"He's a Dolphins fan. I'm interested in Ricky," David said.

The two brothers attended some Argos games last year but plan to attend more this year because of Williams, who they feel adds marquee value.

"First of all, it's great for the Canadian Football League," David said. "In terms of visibility, you've got a lot of people here that wouldn't be here. Just to see an established NFL star in a different environment is good for football fans all over."

SECURITY TIGHTENED

To coincide with Williams' first practice and the presence of 833 school children as part of the Argos' connection to the community, the team has added security for crowd control and safety purposes.

In addition to the kids, the practice was attended by an expanded media corps with the addition of several U.S. journalists on hand to chronicle the Williams story.


Videos

Photos