Dinwiddie eager to compete for starting job

KIRK PENTON, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 9:05 AM ET

Ryan Dinwiddie is heading to Arizona this weekend to soak up the sun on the golf course with former Bombers offensive line coach Bob Wylie and to take in the PGA Tour's FBR Open.

When he gets back to chilly Boise, Idaho, however, Dinwiddie will get right back to working on becoming Winnipeg's new starting quarterback.

After 21/2 years in the CFL, Dinwiddie believes he's ready to stake his claim as a No. 1 pivot.

"I always felt that way, but last year I felt like I took some strides and really got an understanding of how the CFL works," Dinwiddie said earlier this week from Boise. "And I felt my game improved a lot more last year than it did the year before."

With former No. 1 quarterback Kevin Glenn on the trading block, the starting job appears to be wide open. Dinwiddie, who served as Glenn's backup the past two seasons, is not bothered by the fact new head coach Mike Kelly brought in his own quarterback, Stefan LeFors, earlier this month.

"Obviously he traded for him because he thinks he's a good player and there's a lot of things he can bring to the table," Dinwiddie said. "But I have those things, too. I just haven't had a chance to show him.

"I'm looking forward to the opportunity to show the coach what I'm all about once camp starts."

On the surface, it looks like Dinwiddie vs. LeFors -- barring the addition of other quarterbacks -- will be a close camp battle.

Both pivots will be 28 years old when camp gets underway, and they possess a fire in their bellies that Kelly adores. Neither has a decided edge when it comes to arm strength, as they both pack average punches.

Dinwiddie is 1-3 as a starter if you count the 2007 Grey Cup, while LeFors is 0-5 after two seasons with the Esks. Both have thrown more interceptions than touchdowns in their careers.

Dinwiddie hasn't heard from Kelly yet, but the former Boise State star likes what he's hearing through media reports.

"I'm excited for the chance to compete," Dinwiddie said. "He made it clear that he's going to make everybody compete for the job and the spot's open.

"... Even if Kevin was there, I thought I was going to get a chance to compete, but it's just a little different circumstances this time."

Dinwiddie didn't come right out and say it, but he alluded to the problems that plagued the Bomber offence last season. And even though former head coach Doug Berry brought him into the league, he's looking forward to a fresh start.

"I'm glad we got a new coach and a new direction on offence and all those things," he said. "So I'm looking forward to the chance to compete. Now it's time to start over. Everybody's competing, so that's going to be good for our team."

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TALE OF THE TAPE

A regular-season statistical comparison of Bomber quarterbacks Ryan Dinwiddie and Stefan LeFors:

Comp. Att. Comp. % Yds TD Int W-L

Dinwiddie 121 207 58.5 1,581 6 9 1-2

LeFors 111 185 60.0 1,202 6 9 0-5


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