Receivers force Blue to make roster shuffle

KIRK PENTON -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 8:38 AM ET

Jim Daley calls Darnell McDonald and Chris Brazzell "great receivers."

There's only one small catch: They both play the same wideout position, and getting them on the roster at the same time, let alone the field, is a task unto itself for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers head coach.

Brazzell missed Sunday's game against Toronto with a leg injury but is ready to return for Saturday's game in Vancouver against the B.C. Lions.

McDonald, meanwhile, had an outstanding game on Sunday as Brazzell's replacement and almost made it impossible for the coaching staff to bench him on Saturday.

Daley would love for one of them to make the transition to slotback for next season. Brazzell, however, was put at slotback in Hamilton earlier this year, and it led to his trade to Winnipeg.

"It's not the most comfortable transition for either one of them," Daley noted.

To have both Brazzell and McDonald in the lineup on Saturday, Daley would have to take off an import linebacker. It's believed either Ron Ockimey or Joe Tuipala would be the roster victim.

If Tuipala comes off, Neil McKinlay or Sean Woodson would serve as the team's middle linebacker.

BIDDING ADIEU: The Bombers released WR Vinny Sutherland and OL Cory Annett yesterday.

Annett, along with FB Randy Bowles, was acquired from the Toronto Argonauts in February 2004 for two draft picks and the rights to R. Jay Soward.

Annett, 26, dressed for all 18 games last season, but he suited up for only four this season.

Sutherland, 27, signed with Winnipeg in February, but the former NFL kick returner appeared in only five games, making eight catches for 121 yards and one touchdown.

LATE HITS: The CFL trade deadline came and went last night without the Bombers making a deal ... Bombers KR-SB Keith Stokes (charley horse) didn't practise yesterday, but he'll play Saturday ... LB Ryland Wickman, who missed yesterday's practice because of the flu, requested to go on the practice roster last week so he could look for employment elsewhere in the CFL. As of 6 o'clock last night, he was still Bomber property ... The CFL fined B.C.'s Jamal Johnson an undisclosed amount last week for his cheap shot on Stokes when the teams met Oct. 10 at Canad Inns Stadium ... The Lions (11-4) will start QB Casey Printers against the Bombers (5-11). Dave Dickenson is still dealing with post-concussion syndrome ... Lions DB James Whitley, who was acquired from Montreal on Tuesday, will also start ... Is this irony? Bombers SB Milt Stegall yesterday was filming a promotional spot that will be shown on stadium scoreboards during the playoffs.


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