Argos DB used to spotlight

SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 11:26 AM ET

Dovonte Edwards has gone one-on-one on the hardwood with T.J. Ford.

On the gridiron, the 6-foot Edwards has been asked to cover NFL stars Roy Williams and Calvin Johnson, two receivers who are taller and bigger than the 182-pounder.

Under the national spotlight of Monday Night Football, the newest Argo returned a Brett Favre interception for a touchdown at Lambeau Field, a play punctuated by a somersault in the end zone.

Edwards has been exposed to many situations in his athletic life and has been asked to respond to various challenges, but nothing could have prepared him for the first time he first stepped on to a CFL field.

"Wow!'' Edwards recalled yesterday on an idyllic late afternoon following Argos practice.

"All I could think of was: 'Look at how big this field is.'

"The wideness caught my eye, first and foremost. On some routes, you can drive a little downhill knowing the sideline is near.

"But there's 12 extra yards out here. A quarterback can throw to a spot and you think you can undercut it, but you can't."

Once Edwards began to learn his new surroundings and understand the nuances of three-down football, he quickly established himself.

As the Argos get ready to usher in the regular season amid a culture of change and a changed roster, Edwards looms as a very key piece and one to watch.

He'll line up at defensive halfback and be asked to return punts and kickoffs.

Edwards is a playmaker, a converted receiver who views any football thrown his way as his intended target.

The road Edwards took to Argoland speaks a lot to the NFL's politics and timing.

He played 12 games for the Minnesota Vikings in 2005, the year he picked off Favre's heave. An arm injury sidelined Edwards for the 2006 season and, a year later, he wound in Detroit as a free agent.

He played five games with the Lions and was closing in on qualifying for his pension when he suddenly got released.

During his final training camp in the NFL, the Argos scouted the Lions and noticed how effective Edwards was when matched up against more physically imposing receivers.

"I'm a firm believer that everything happens for a reason,'' said Edwards, who didn't play football last year but stayed active by working out and volunteering to help children.

"I'm very happy to be here."

TESTING THE WATERS

The Edmonton Eskimos won't be needing the services of JoJuan Armour just yet.

It's not because of the middle linebacker's unceremonious departure from the Calgary Stampeders last week following reports of an altercation with teammate Jeremaine Copeland. It has more to do with the position he plays.

"I think what JoJuan's done is that he's called across the league -- now I'm sure there's a few other teams that he's spoken to -- and we were clearly on the top of his list," said Eskimos GM Danny Maciocia. "I've never coached him, but I do know JoJuan, we've spoken in the past. I just told him the situation at hand, which was we're quite comfortable where we're at.

"So right now, there's no interest, but you never know if there's an interest down the road. But we're quite happy with the people we've got here."


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