Jyles keeping both hands on the ball

KIRK PENTON, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:27 AM ET

Steven Jyles has proven he can keep the ball out of opposing players’ hands when throwing it.

It’s holding on to the ball himself that has been a bit of an adventure for the Bombers’ new starting quarterback. Jyles has fumbled the pigskin five times and lost it on three occasions this season, including one on a snap with centre Obby Khan that went awry.

The two have come up with a cute plan to prevent that from happening again.

“Now when I’m under centre I slap him in the a-- and say, ‘I’m under!’ ” Jyles said.

As for the propensity to lose his grip on the Wilson when the pocket collapses or he takes off, Jyles said the solution is simple.

“I put two hands on the ball. A lot of quarterbacks in the pocket when they start running, they like to get a full sprint. You can’t do that with two hands on the ball.

“It’s more important to protect the football than trying to escape. The first thing D-linemen are taught is to strip the quarterback.”

FRIEND AND FOE: There’s a chance the Argos will dress import running back Anthony Alridge, who signed with the team on Thursday.

If he plays and gets some touches, at least Bomber defensive end Phillip Hunt will be familiar with his moves. That’s because they were teammates at the University of Houston.

“Yeah, that’s my boy. We go way back to freshman year,” Hunt said. “He gave me my first nickname, the Quarterback Hunter.”

Hunt didn’t think Alridge was going to dress, but it’s believed he will and might even get some plays on offence.

“I gotta warn the fellas then,” Hunt said.

SPEED BUMPS: Considering they’re 0-5 on the road this year, it’s not like the Bombers needed any travel woes.

Yet they still got some on Saturday when their flight out of Winnipeg was delayed two hours.

“It’s annoying, but what are you going to do about it?” head coach Paul LaPolice said. “Give us a chance to play somewhere and we’ll find you. We’ll meet you there.”

If the flight delay wasn’t bad enough, the Gardiner Expressway — the main artery from the airport to downtown — is closed this weekend, meaning the Bombers arrived at their hotel 2½ hours later than originally planned.

COPING: The Argos will get a boost on offence with the return of veteran slotback Jeremaine Copeland, who missed three games with a dislocated left elbow.

“It’s a good, weird feeling,” Copeland said on the eve of his return. “It just feels like I haven’t played in months, sitting back and being on the sideline. I’m anxious and eager to get back out there.”

QUOTABLE: “We’re treating it like it’s a playoff game. It’s a playoff atmosphere for us. We’re making our push right now, and we need a victory.” — Argos quarterback Cleo Lemon

LATE HITS: The Argos are 3-1 at home this season … The Bombers have won the last two meetings at Rogers Centre … Injured Bomber quarterback Buck Pierce made the trip to southern Ontario and will chart defensive coverages for offensive co-ordinator Jamie Barresi … The Argo defence is giving up a league-worst 417 yards of offence per game … Toronto had eight sacks last week against B.C., nearly doubling their season total to 18.

kirk.penton@sunmedia.ca


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