Parker poses new problem

KIRK PENTON, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:23 AM ET

Byron Parker dares -- dares -- his good buddy Michael Bishop to throw a corner route against him tonight.

The newest Edmonton Eskimos cornerback, who was acquired this week in a trade with the Toronto Argonauts, lived with Bishop, the Bombers starting quarterback, for two years when they were with the Boatmen.

And since they practised against one other for another two years on top of that, they know each other's moves.

The last time they met, last October, Parker picked off Bishop twice. That's why he would love for Bishop to test him again tonight when the Bombers and Esks clash at Canad Inns Stadium.

"If he tries to throw that corner route, he knows I'm going to go get it," Parker said. "He knows that's one route not to throw.

"I'm already expecting him to set me up with a double move. I've been thinking about that all last night and all week. I know he is."

Bishop wasn't in the mood to talk any trash yesterday, saying only the Bombers must be wary of his shifty friend.

"I know he's going to try to jump on the short routes and try to bait you in," Bishop said, "but our receivers gotta be smart enough to understand what he's doing."

OVERHAULING: The Eskimos are making a whopping seven roster changes tonight, including six on defence that could affect as many as five starting spots.

Players who could get their first starts of the season for the Esks are Parker, defensive back Randee Drew, safety Scott Gordon, and defensive tackles Jerome Haywood and Xzavie Jackson.

The Bombers, meanwhile, aren't making any changes to their 42-man roster for the first time this season.

BIGGER ROLE: Expect receiver Aaron Hargreaves to move into a starting role tonight ahead of Dudley Guice Jr.

Hargreaves figures he will get his most action of the season tonight -- at slotback, no less. He's normally parked way out at the strong-side wideout spot or on the sidelines.

"I guess it's been a little frustrating at times, but we've always had a good group of receivers here," the second-year pro said.

"So just to play amongst these guys is an honour and just to get a shot, it's a really good feeling."

LATE HITS: As of 4:30 p.m. yesterday, only 21,018 tickets had been sold for tonight's game ... The Bombers are going for their first winning streak of the season. They haven't won two in a row since last November ... The Blue Lightning's first calendar will go on sale tonight at The Bomber Store. The 15-month calendar, chock full of pictures of Stacey Stone's talented cast of cheerleaders, sells for $15. They're also available at bluebombers.com.

kirk.penton@sunmedia.ca


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