No time for vacation

JIM BENDER -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 8:23 AM ET

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers will have a another week to contemplate their navels and set their minds for the task at hand.

And, as they either left for different parts of the continent or just planned to stick around town, they know they have yet to clinch a CFL playoff berth. And they head into the break with the 23-20 loss to Montreal still fresh on their minds.

"I don't think anyone on this team should be going on any siesta or vacation," said veteran Winnipeg defensive tackle Doug Brown. "We all need to focus in on our conditioning and our strength because we got pushed around a little bit last (Friday), and we really need to get our physical selves back to where we were at the beginning of the year when we were really playing strong."

Tailback Charles Roberts would actually prefer to get right back on the field.

"I don't like bye weeks," said Roberts, who was planning to remain in Winnipeg. "I'd rather keep pushing through. It's always better if you can go out to redeem yourselves quickly. Now we've got to sit a week and a half. This is a tough loss. This is not the type of loss you want to sit on for a week. If we had gotten blown out, it probably would have been a little bit better to handle. But we know we can play with these guys (Alouettes) and we just let a golden opportunity slip away."

Although defensive end Tom Canada returned to his California home the last bye week, he was also planning to stay put this time.

"The last week screwed me up so I'm just going to stick around," he said. "You get home and see the ocean and all that stuff. And it's bittersweet because, just when you get comfortable feeling the West-Coast vibe, the next thing you know, you're back on a plane. So, I'm just going to stick around.

"I'm going to do some paint-balling, do some go-karting, maybe some bowling. There's a motocross thing on Friday that I want to go to. And get a couple of workouts in -- if I make it."

Safety Kyries Hebert has headed back to his Houston home to see his daughter, Kaitlyn, 5, and son, Kylie, 3.

"I'm going to go home and watch my daughter's soccer game, watch my little brother's football game and just spend time with my family," he said. "My brother's (Demetrius) a freshman in high school so, I'm going to go and check him out and see what he's doing and maybe coach him up a little bit."

When the Bombers return, they will have three games left, with the first one being against the Tiger-Cats in Hamilton.

"It's a great time for the bye," said wide receiver Derick Armstrong, who has only played two games for Winnipeg since arriving from the NFL. "It gives everyone a chance to look at themselves and see if they really want to win, especially with the playoffs coming. If we come back and everyone has the same goal, we can be a pretty good team."

Armstrong has returned to see his wife and three kids "and ride my (seven) horses," he said.

"It just takes me away from football, gives me a little peace of mind. I get to think about a lot of things. When I got a lot of stresses on me, I just go riding."

Although kicker Troy Westwood has also returned to Toronto to see his family, he said he hates bye weeks. And centre Obby Khan is staying put, too.

"I'm just going to hang out here in Winnipeg, relax, take it easy, heal up and get ready for the next three weeks and the playoffs," said Khan, who suffered an elbow injury in the last game.

The Bombers are hoping to get other injured players back when they return.


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