Receiving corps receiving makeover

KEN WIEBE -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 9:13 AM ET

It's time for another home makeover -- Winnipeg Blue Bombers edition.

First it was the much-maligned offensive line, now it's time for the receiving corps to be overhauled.

The offence has been devastated by dropped passes this season, but two of the biggest culprits have been sent packing. Wane McGarity was released last week and Kamau Peterson was dealt to the Hamilton Tiger-Cats on Monday for Chris Brazzell.

"It's apparent to a lot of people, including ourselves, that our pass game has not been at the level a CFL team needs," said Blue Bombers head coach Jim Daley. "Just like our offensive line, at one point, wasn't at the level of execution a CFL team needs. So we will, just like we did with the O-line, continue to look at change -- if we have to -- and do it in an expedient manner. Sometimes it's lot easier to be aware of the concern than it is to address it via trade."

Out of necessity

This trade was out of necessity.

"Why did we make a trade? It's apparent we needed to improve," said Daley. "I would also say that until we get to a level where we feel we are competitive and have the right combination in place, we will continue to look at any position, if necessary, to change. That's part of the stage that we're in. It took us a long time to get an O-line together that we feel is competitive, capable, physical and will become a good one. Obviously, we'll take time at other positions too."

Daley confessed yesterday that the Blue Bombers were one of the teams wooing Brazzell in the off-season during the free agency period.

Blue Bombers general manager Brendan Taman was talking with Tiger-Cats director of player personnel Craig Smith during a scouting trip and Brazzell's name came up on Sunday night. By late Monday, the deal was consummated.

"Actually, we didn't think he was available," said Taman, who was attending Minnesota Vikings training camp in Mankato, Minn. "When you're 1-6, you have to look at making changes."

Brazzell, who arrived late yesterday afternoon but did not practice, might not be the only addition to the receiving corps this weekend.

Darnell McDonald, who went to training camp with the Montreal Alouettes and was added to the Blue Bombers practice roster last week, could be inserted to the starting lineup at wide receiver for Vinny Sutherland but Daley said it was too early to tell.

If McDonald and Brazzell are both added to the roster this week, Canadian wideout Gilles Collon and slotback Milt Stegall would likely be the other starters, pushing Jamie Stoddard back into the role of fifth receiver. The defence will also sport a different look as either Willie Fells or Ryland Wickman comes off the roster because of the import ratio.


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