New receiver hurt

PAUL FRIESEN, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 9:25 AM ET

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers may have received some damaged goods in a trade with Calgary.

Canadian receiver Jabari Arthur, thought to be ready to return from a broken foot, may still be a game or two away.

The Bombers got the news after Arthur had his team physical.

"Everyone, including myself, was a little bit disappointed," Arthur told the Sun, after watching, but not participating, in his first practice, yesterday. "We're not sure yet what direction we're going to go. I'll see what they (doctors) have to say. It might be a couple of weeks. Make a decision the next couple of days."

A day earlier, Bomber head coach Mike Kelly had said Arthur, on Calgary's nine-game injured list, was ready to play a couple of weeks ago, and could step right into the lineup.

Yesterday, Kelly backtracked from those statements.

"We probably figured this would maybe be a little more of a long-term thing," Kelly said. "That Calgary was trying to get him to practice and trying to push him along, that it might be a week or two before we really got him ready to go. So I'm not overly surprised."

Arthur, kick returner Titus Ryan and defensive end Odell Willis were acquired from the Stampeders Sunday for veteran receivers Arjei Franklin, a Canadian, and import Romby Bryant

The Bombers will likely be stretched thin at receiver when they host Toronto, Saturday.

Veteran Terrance Edwards is still suffering the effects of a hellacious hit against Montreal last weekend, a hit that knocked him cold.

"That was as scary a thing as I've been involved in in football," Kelly said. "We'd ask him questions and he'd just look at us. His eyes would track, but nothing would come out of his mouth.

"It'll make you realize real quick that there's a whole lot more important things than playing a football game."

Kelly says the Bombers have asked the league to look at the hit, a blindside shot from Als linebacker Shea Emry.

NEW BLOOD: Quarterback Ricky Santos, acquired from Montreal on Monday, got first-hand look at the Bomber offence yesterday, and echoed what others have said about it.

"It's different," Santos said. "It's different. Obviously, Montreal is wide open, five, six wide (receivers) and throw it all over the field. So it's an adjustment. But it can be very successful, if run correctly."

Told that several quarterbacks have tried to run it, without success, Santos shrugged.

"I guess they brought me in to see what I can do, so I don't know. All I can do is control what I can control. Go out there and work hard and try to get these guys to rally around me if I get that opportunity."

Earlier, Santos had told a reporter starter Michael Bishop was the man, to which Bishop replied, "It's not my show."

The implication being, Santos, like Casey Bramlet before him, may get his shot sooner rather than later.

"That's just a veteran guy maybe being a little bitter of what the circumstances have come to," Santos said of Bishop. "But he's definitely the leader."

LOCKER AUCTION: Some Bomber veterans, locker-room neighbours of banished linebacker Barrin Simpson, have placed a sign on Simpson's cleared-out space, advertising the locker for sale.

It's a lighthearted way of dealing with yet another distraction in a season full of them.

"Every team has distractions and they have to deal with it," shrugged fullback Jon Oosterhuis, who sits a few stalls down from Simpson's old spot. "Each player just has to look inside and worry about themselves. We have to play our hearts out. Nothing's guaranteed."

Except, maybe, that there are more changes to come.

"I don't know what I expect," Oosterhuis said. "The reality of the situation is they could make some more changes. Hopefully, not. Hopefully we do what we're supposed to do on the field and then we don't have to worry about that stuff."

paul.friesen@sunmedia.ca


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