Convincing Berry

KIRK PENTON -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:55 AM ET

The kicking battle continued without Troy Westwood yesterday, and Winnipeg Blue Bombers head coach Doug Berry plans to make his decision today.

Newcomers Rob Pikula and Clinton Greathouse did all of the field goal kicking and punting at yesterday's practice, and they will get one final chance today to convince Berry that they should do one or both duties in Thursday's home opener against Montreal.

"They were better today than yesterday," Berry said. "They got a little bit of the trip (to Winnipeg) out of them. They were more consistent.

"The thing I like about both of them in punting is that they're both two-step punters. The ball's gone much quicker than a three-step punter. We're looking for the consistency factor and then punting first, field goals second."

Greathouse, who automatically trails in the battle simply because he's an American, had more hang time on his punts yesterday, while Pikula hit one more field goal.

Westwood, who missed three of four field goals in last week's 39-39 tie with the Edmonton Eskimos, is still in the running for the placekicking job even though he's not competing.

"We've got two guys in here that we need to evaluate, and they need to get all the reps so we can make a complete evaluation of them and then compare them to what we know about Troy," Berry said.

"And when we do that, it could happen that we would activate Troy to kick this week. That can happen. It's just not going to happen (today) in practice."

STICKY SITUATION? Longsnapper Chris Cvetkovic is the man stuck in the middle of the awkward kicking situation this week at practice, but he's not thinking about it.

"It's kind of no different for me," Cvetkovic said. "I just go out there and snap regardless. I gotta do my own job."

Cvetkovic has been snapping the ball to either Westwood or his holder, Jamie Stoddard, for the last three years, and the two spend most of every practice together on the sidelines.

Now that Westwood is in danger of losing his job and is not even allowed to kick this week, the duo has been separated. Westwood paces the sidelines by himself while Cvetkovic snaps for the newcomers.

"It's one of those things where you have to worry about yourself first, unfortunately," Cvetkovic said. "It sounds like a selfish thing to do, but you gotta be accountable for yourself and accountable to your teammates."

LATE HITS: Wide receiver Derick Armstrong (hamstring) watched his second straight practice yesterday and is questionable for Thursday's game. Kerry Johnson has filled in for Armstrong at practice ... Defensive back Davin Bush and slotback O'Neil Wilson are "very likely" to return from injury this week, Berry said ... Defensive tackle Jerome Haywood has been taking first-team reps this week in place of Nate Davis ... The Bombers practise at 11:10 a.m. today ... The Toronto Argos have added former NFL kicker Steve Christie and receiver Derrell (Mookie) Mitchell to their practice roster.


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