Blink back, for real

KIRK PENTON -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 7:40 AM ET

Charles Roberts is expected to make his training camp debut with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers this morning.

No, you're not losing your mind. You have heard that before.

Roberts, the team's star running back, was supposed to hit the field for the first time yesterday morning after getting married on Saturday, but he was AWOL once again after his flight out of Denver on Sunday night was cancelled.

He was re-routed through Chicago and didn't arrive in Winnipeg until yesterday at noon.

He had his physical yesterday afternoon and took part in team meetings last night, but he wasn't made available to the media.

"He called me (Sunday) night and indicated he had some issues with his plane," said Bomber GM Brendan Taman. "He didn't purposely miss it.

"He was very concerned about the perception again of him being late, (but) he just ran into a problem in Denver and he was late."

Roberts made headlines last month when he told the Sun he wanted to be traded because the team was pursuing suspended NFL running back Onterrio Smith.

The Bombers eventually signed Smith, but Roberts never did ask the team for a trade.

STILL NO. 1

Taman maintains that Roberts will remain the No. 1 tailback no matter what, but the five-time all-star still had harsh words for the GM during his interview with the Sun.

"Brendan don't run the offence," Roberts said at the time. "Brendan is in the front office. As you see with Kyries Hebert, Brendan doesn't really care how a player feels."

Hebert, a linebacker whom the Bombers claimed off waivers in the wake of the Ottawa Renegades dispersal draft, is currently trying to get out of his CFL contract to pursue a job in the NFL.

Taman was asked yesterday when he was finally going to talk to Roberts.

"I'll get to him when I get to him," said Taman. "He's got football to worry about."


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