Simpson excited to be back on line with Bombers

JIM BENDER, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:47 AM ET

The Minister of Defence will be back preying upon opposing offences for the Blue Bombers this Monday.

And praying for his dad.

Winnipeg middle linebacker Barrin Simpson replaces the injured Joe Lobendahn (hamstring pull) when the Bombers face the Tiger-Cats in Hamilton, head coach Mike Kelly confirmed yesterday.

"I'm definitely excited to be back playing ball," said Simpson, who returned to the team earlier this week. "I'm also excited about being healthy."

Simpson had demanded to be traded, then refused to go on the nine-game injury list when turf toe prevented him from playing. He returned once he was healthy.

"I've been running a little bit but I've been off for about three weeks," he said. "It won't take long but I'll probably get a little winded. I actually lost weight (four pounds), so I'll be good."

Simpson got more bad news about his diabetic father Andrew, who's 58. Since surgery to remove his toes on one foot didn't remove all of the gangrene that had set in, surgeons removed part of his leg up to his calf Thursday.

"Surgery went good and he's feeling a lot better," Simpson said.

SAY WHAT?: Bomber DL Doug Brown was upset Hamilton has been made 9.5-point favourites over the Bombers.

"Since they've been 10-point favourites over anybody, it's definitely been a while," he said. "Either they're that good this year or we're that bad, we're not sure. I guess we'll find out on Monday, huh?"

KHAN BROTHER: The Bombers welcomed Obby Khan younger brother Qasim, also an offensive lineman, to practice yesterday.

"You can see on the whiteboard that this is 'National Invite Your Brother to Play Football Week,'" joked Obby, adding Qasim was better than he was when they were younger. "Lorne Plante left us so we needed another body."

Qasim is a 6-foot-4, 310-pound Ottawa Gee Gees product who's been working in an office for the past 16 months.

"I have an opportunity of a lifetime here with my brother and playing for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers," said Qasim, who hopes to get an invitation to next year's training camp. "It's a dream-come-true beyond words."

HASHMARKS: SB Terrence Edwards will likely replace WR Dudley Guice Jr. on Monday's roster ... S Shawn Gallant missed practice all week with a "burner" but is expected to play ... Quinton Porter will start at QB for Hamilton, but Kelly expects to also see Kevin Glenn, who beat his old team in relief the last time the two met.


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