Easy does it, Pre

LANCE HORNBY, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 9:41 AM ET

Sweater No. 1 will be looking out for No. 1 tomorrow night when the Boatmen go to the boot.

Though doctors have cleared kicker Noel Prefontaine to play against the Calgary Stampeders tomorrow despite a herniated disc and the odd cobweb from an opening-night concussion, the tradeoff is the gung-ho Argo will have to stay away from trick plays and curb his enthusiasm to block.

"I'll be picking my spots," Prefontaine said yesterday at the club's Erindale practice facility. "You don't want to step on the field and worry about getting hurt. I won't be 100%, but I don't see any other kickers around here today."

That was a reference to NFL veteran Steve Christie's cameo against the Hamilton Tiger-Cats on Saturday, a wobbly 2-for-4 night on field goals, but a feel-good story for the Oakville-born NFL veteran to get to play in his own neighbourhood. Toronto head coach Pinball Clemons let Christie go back into retirement yesterday, but hinted it won't be permanent.

"It was his first game after a long layoff," Clemons said of his 39-year-old one-time teammate at William and Mary. "If we need to employ him again, we will."

But Clemons will be glad to see last year's CFL punting leader back after Prefontaine didn't miss a game in 2006. Now in his 10th CFL season, all in Double Blue, Prefontaine spent the past two days testing both his injuries in full workouts in the summer heat wave. He was rattled during the follow through of a kick against the B.C. Lions in their opening game of the season.

"The most vulnerable position you can be in during a football game is with your feet up in the air," Prefontaine said. "It was a freak thing. But I will have a positive role in the game against Calgary."

Clemons will have to sit running back John Avery after he was slowed by a knee injury in Hamilton. Jamel White, who had started ahead of Avery against B.C., goes back in against the Stamps after suffering a shoulder injury against the Lions.

Clemons says the Argos can't complain about their short week when the Stamps played and lost badly on Sunday to the Saskatchewan Roughriders, 49-8, and immediately flew East to workout in Hamilton before tomorrow's game.

While the Stamps aren't as bad as their weekend loss, they come to Toronto with a record of 3-9 at the Rogers Centre since 2001.

Toronto quarterback Michael Bishop, making his first home start since the end of the 2005 season, and the record-seeking receiver Mookie Mitchell, will give Calgary enough fits, but the Argos defence is notoriously tough at home. New outside linebacker Willie Pile has fit right in.

"Since the first day of training camp, we've had a trust on defence," said the former Kansas City Chief/Dallas Cowboy. "Every linebacker has a responsibility -- mine is working with our defensive line -- but everyone here brings something different to the table."

"We go our separate ways after practice, but we always seem to bring some good ideas back the next day."\


Videos

Photos