Banking on a second try

KIRK PENTON -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 10:14 AM ET

Brad Banks dropped back and fired a soaring, heat-seeking pass that landed in Chris Brazzell's mitts 50 yards downfield.

Brazzell, who had whizzed past two defenders, then strolled into the end zone.

Banks could not be picking a better time to look good in practice.

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers third-string quarterback has a 50-50 chance of starting Friday night against the Toronto Argonauts, but those odds might be stacked a little more in his favour after the last two days of workouts.

"He's had two really sharp days," Bombers head coach Doug Berry said. "He's delivered the ball, the ball's been out of his hands, (and he's making) correct decisions. I like seeing this in Brad."

So does Banks.

"I'm very confident in everything that I'm doing out there," the former Ottawa Renegade said. "I have a good clue about everything that's going on and know what everybody's doing. I feel good about everything."

Berry said yesterday that it will be either Banks or No. 2 pivot Mike Quinn under centre for Friday's huge East Division clash between the Bombers (5-4) and Argos (4-5).

No. 1 quarterback Kevin Glenn, who had arthroscopic knee surgery 12 days ago, said Sunday that he won't be playing against the Argos. Yesterday, however, he relayed that his knee is getting better.

"I don't know. I'll see," Glenn said when asked again if he'll start. "I have to keep you guys in suspense."

Glenn hasn't practised the last two days, but he's been more than mobile while working out with head trainer Al Couture. The only possibility of Glenn playing is if he comes to Berry this morning and says he's 100%.

"I don't think that's going to happen," Berry said.

And as for newcomer Ryan Dinwiddie, Berry said it's too early to throw him into the fire.

So that leaves Quinn, who struggled mightily in Winnipeg's 32-5 loss to B.C. on Aug. 10, or Banks, who struggled mightily in Winnipeg's 26-11 loss to Hamilton on Aug. 4.

The knock on Banks earlier this season was that he wasn't picking up the offence quickly enough. He seems to have corrected that problem.

"We've been here for a couple months now, and the more you do, the more comfortable you get with things," Berry said.

Berry's philosophy includes giving players two opportunities: they can make mistakes one time, but they had better fix them the next time out.

The only question now is: To which quarterback is he going to give the second chance?

"If Mike Quinn is showing that he's having good progress and is doing the right things this week, then he deserves a second chance," Berry said.

It appears Banks is going to make Berry's decision a tough one.

"I always feel that I deserve to start. I'll always feel that," he said. "I've paid my dues, and I work hard, so why not?"

Berry hopes to make his decision today.


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