EDMONTON -- The Blue Bombers are well on their way to restoring respectability in the CFL.
But the Eskimos want to restore the attitude that made them Grey Cup champions last season.
"It's really hard because everyone's out to prove that you're not as good as you think you are," veteran Edmonton linebacker Singor Mobley said yesterday. "Plus, we're the Edmonton Eskimos and a lot of teams don't like us anyway.
"But we're up for the challenge and the next step is to get this win over Winnipeg."
Although the Bombers have already re-gained some respect, they are coming off a 44-16 loss to Montreal and playing in a stadium where they seldom win. Not only that but the Eskimos, who won their last match, had the bye last week and are 4-1 in games where they are coming off a bye.
Then there's all those changes on the Winnipeg side
The Bombers will gamble on Robert Bean at cornerback and of course those injuries on the offensive line mean two non-starters will actually start up front. That means it could be a long night for both running back Charles Roberts and quarterback Kevin Glenn.
On the other hand, Ron Warner returns to what is rapidly becoming the best front four in the CFL, which could make life difficult for both Edmonton running back Troy Davis and quarterback Ricky Ray. And Kyries Hebert, who made people notice in his first game back last week, has a game under his belt and could make some noise this week -- just as long as they don't keep taking legit picks away from him.
A lot, too, will depend on whether the Bombers and their coaches can keep their cool this time out. Edmonton head coach Danny Maciocia was planning to entertain his friend, Bombers head knock Doug Berry, last night. The joke is that he was planning to serve him finger food.