A truly elite athlete

KEN WIEBE -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 11:38 AM ET

Several members of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers got a first-hand look at just how good Kerry Joseph can be when they were playing for the Ottawa Renegades.

There won't be any time to stand in awe of Joseph this weekend as he walks into Canad Inns Stadium as the quarterback of the Saskatchewan Roughriders.

But when asked about Joseph's abilities, the praise was overflowing.

"He's one of the best athletes I've ever seen, hands down," said Blue Bombers centre Obby Khan. "I was only with him for two years, but his improvement from the beginning to when we left Ottawa (was noticeable), there was a reason we were coming along really well. He was running the ball and throwing it with confidence, which for a quarterback is huge."

"You take an athlete and put him in at probably the most important position on the field, he's got a good head on his shoulders and a good arm. Once he can really develop and learn that position, he'll be one of the best quarterbacks in the league. I think he'll be fantastic."

Bombers linebacker Donnovan Carter has a great respect for Josesph's abilities.

"Kerry can do everything on the football field, I think he even punted when he was in college," said Carter. "We called him Robo-quarterback. He's got a strong arm and he's developing as far as reading defences and what we're trying to throw at him."

Carter is excited to face his former teammate.

"On the field, it's business and I'm coming after him," said Carter. "He's trying to get me too and trying to make me look bad by putting the ball in the end zone. I'm trying to put my helmet in his chest. We're going to go at it, we're both competitors."

Bombers defensive back Kyries Hebert did his best to explain the challenge of trying to contain the athletic quarterback.

"If I had to face him by myself, I think it would be tough but I've got 11 other guys with me so that will make my job easier," said Hebert. "You have to respect every aspect of his game at all points. At no point can you forget about his ability to run and at no point can you just focus on his ability to run because then you open up his arm and he has an awesome arm. He gives you 100% every day and you can always appreciate that as a teammate."

Quarterback Brad Banks spent plenty of time watching Joseph during practices and games when they were in Ottawa and he watched closely, since they share a similar style.

"I learned a lot from him," said Banks. "You want to take things that are useful. You learn from his mistakes because he's getting more reps. You also try to do some of the good things that he did. That style of quarterback is very effective. Every defensive guy I've talked to in this league and other leagues hate mobile quarterbacks because they hate chasing them."


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