One of the more surreal weeks in the history of the Argos ends today as the Boatmen hope to end a two-game losing streak when they face the Edmonton Eskimos at the Rogers Centre.
The week that was included offensive lineman Ross Weaver leaving the team to get married. The import tackle is expected to rejoin the team tomorrow.
It was followed by the departure of defensive back Willie Middlebrooks, whom the club said on Friday was tending to a family emergency in Florida. But during yesterday's media availability, head coach Rich Stubler revealed that Middlebrooks was on his way back to Toronto after attending a funeral and will start.
Those were just two of a handful of subplots heading into today's kickoff, and it's anyone's guess as to how the Argos will respond.
The status of the team's leading receiver, Andre Talbot, will be a game-time decision as the Laurier product continues to nurse an injured groin.
Weaver's spot on the active roster will be taken by Mike Galassi, a 23-year-old rookie who was working as a demolition man as early as two weeks before the Argos came calling.
At least the Argos can take some comfort in the knowledge that key special teams players Chris Hardy and Jean-Nicolas Carriere will be available. Hardy, who will make his season debut after tearing his groin, serves as special teams captain, while the rookie Carriere is considered a key piece in the Argos' coverage package.
During their July 10 loss in Edmonton, the Argos yielded a special teams touchdown and lost the battle of field position.
Today's rematch also coincides with the return of Ronald Flemons, whom the Argos re-acquired in a recent trade with Saskatchewan. Flemons is known as a run-stopper on a defence that has been vulnerable along the ground.
It wouldn't surprise some if the Argos changed from their familiar three-four look to a more conventional four-three alignment, especially on first down.
If that isn't enough, the Argos' maligned offence will start three rookie receivers in Tyler Scott, who hauled in four receptions in his debut last week, James Robinson and Johnnie Morant.
Assuming Talbot isn't able to play, the Argos' lone veteran receiver will be Arland Bruce III, who caught two touchdown passes last week, including one highlight-reel reception.
Bethel Johnson (ankle) will sit out his second straight game, but the veteran receiver is expected back for next Sunday's meeting in Regina.
"I'm the veteran and I have to keep our unit together,'' Bruce said. "It's up to me to get my outlaws ready."
The Eskimos used as many as three defenders on Bruce last week, forcing someone other than the explosive slotback to beat them.
"There were a couple of times when they went man-to-man and, if they do that (today), we have to take advantage,'' Bruce said.