Blue lines are mighty green

KIRK PENTON -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 10:39 AM ET

They say football games are won in the trenches.

If "they" are correct, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers go into tonight's game against the B.C. Lions with a distinct disadvantage.

Four of Winnipeg's nine regular offensive and defensive linemen -- two on each side of the ball -- are injured and won't play, and their replacements lack experience.

Left guard Kyle Koch will be making his CFL debut. Defensive end Stevie Baggs will be making his first start for the Bombers this season. Defensive tackle Jabari Issa will be playing just his second game with the Blue and Gold.

Second-year pro Dominic Picard, at centre, is the most experienced of the bunch thanks to the nine games he started earlier this season.

Speaking as an offensive lineman, Murphy said a connection among the starting five is imperative.

"So much of it has to do with being a cohesive unit, all five guys working as one," Murphy said yesterday. "Any time you get a guy out, much less two guys -- I know their offensive line is pretty good as far as ranking in the CFL -- it's tough to do."

Did we mention the Lions lead the CFL with 42 sacks?

As for the defensive ends he will see tonight, Murphy doesn't seem to care if it's Stevie Baggs or Stevie Yzerman lining up opposite him.

"I'm going to do what I do," said the reigning CFL O-lineman of the year said with a smile. "They could line anyone up out there."


Videos

Photos