A dearth of QB options

STEVE BUFFERY -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:51 AM ET

The Argonauts may have their big gun back in quarterback Michael Bishop, but they will be going into British Columbia on Saturday with less than a full arsenal.

A couple of weeks ago, the Boatmen had more than enough experienced quarterbacks on the roster, even with their No. 1 pivot Bishop still out with a broken wrist.

But now, with an important game against the Lions on the horizon, head coach Michael Clemons is down to just two regular QBs, Bishop and primary backup Rocky Butler.

Which means, in a worst-case scenario, Clemons would have to call upon punter/kicker Noel Prefontaine to take some snaps against the Lions -- even if it is highly unlikely that Bishop and Butler would both get hurt in the same game. Highly unlikely, but possible. And that has Clemons just a little uneasy.

FULL CONFIDENCE

"Obviously, any time you get into a situation where you're forced to use your third quarterback, it's not a great situation," Clemons said yesterday. He added, however, that he has full confidence in Prefontaine to step up if needed. The Argos kicker is considered a great all-around athlete and, in fact, led El Camino High in California to a 22-2 record as the team's quarterback and a CIF championship, although he certainly is not game-ready at that position, quite yet.

"It's been a few years since he's had to call out the signals, but one of these days, we're going to give him a snap, just so he can say he's done it," Clemons said of Prefontaine.

The Argos have found themselves in short-handed situations at quarterback as the result of trading Mike McMahon to Montreal this week and releasing Eric Crouch earlier this month and Robert Kent last month.

But Clemons said GM Adam Rita is currently negotiating with several quarterbacks and expects a third QB soon. But it won't be just some veteran who has been around the block of few times.

Clemons said the goal is to find a promising, young QB, who could develop into a future star in the CFL.

"We have our (main) guy, and our guy is Michael Bishop. And now we're looking for the guy who is coming after him," Clemons said. "The guy who we put at the No. 3 will be a guy who can come in and be the next guy -- the Michael Bishop of five years ago."

STEVE.BUFFERY@SUNMEDIA.CA

lowly Hamilton TigerCats, but will face a stiffer challenge on the road on Saturday against the 6-3-1 B.C. Lions, who sit in second in the West.

NOTES: Argos long snapper Randy Srochenski, a Regina native, will play in his 200th CFL game against the Lions on Saturday ... Offensive tackle Brian Ramsey will play in front of close to 80 family members and friends against the Lions as his dad and brother are renting a Greyhound bus and bringing over a huge cheering section from his hometown of Victoria.


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