Lobendahn out for season

PAUL FRIESEN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 1:40 AM ET

WINNIPEG - Joe Lobendahn’s next taste of football will be at training camp, 2012.

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers middle linebacker will undergo surgery for a torn ACL in his right knee, an injury suffered in Sunday’s Banjo Bowl loss to the Saskatchewan Roughriders.

Lobendahn, one of the Bombers’ top defensive players this season and a two-time CFL defensive player of the week, was hurt trying to make a tackle on special teams.

Rehab time of six months is typical for a torn ACL.

The Bombers have placed Lobendahn on the nine-game injury list, where his salary won’t count against the cap.

He was replaced last Sunday by non-import Pierre-Luc Labbe, who has become good friends with Lobendahn.

“And you don’t see that really often with two guys who play the same position,” Labbe said. “I’ve been here for four years, and he’s been here for four years. We went to a concert last week together. We’re going to yoga together every week.

“It hurts right now. It’s really tough.”

BUCK OR NO BUCK?: The Bombers say quarterback Buck Pierce is “day-to-day” with bruised ribs, an injury that occurred on the first series against the Riders.

Pierce was on the receiving end of several blows that shook him up, Sunday, and had trouble moving after the game.

He did host his weekly radio show, Tuesday night.

The Bombers, 7-3, don’t practise until Wednesday, when they begin preparations for a trip to Montreal to face the 6-4 Alouettes, a game that will decide temporary possession of first place in the CFL East.

“We gotta go to Montreal next week — they’re the champs — and get it back on track,” receiver Terrence Edwards said. “Everybody’s gotta pick their game up to get this going.”

The Alouettes, two-time defending Grey Cup champions, figure to be clear favourites, despite the records.

“We’re playing Montreal, who, for pretty much everybody, is the best team in the East,” Labbe said. “So we gotta show everybody else that they’re wrong.”

NO EXCUSES: The Bomber defence wants no part of the argument that they were under the gun because of turnovers by the offence.

“Forty-five points is 45 points,” linebacker Clint Kent said.

“If they have great field position, the only thing we try to do is hold them to three. We gotta prevent touchdowns. That’s our main goal.”

Over the last two games the Winnipeg defence, still ranked No. 1 in the CFL, overall, has given up seven touchdown passes.

“We haven’t pressed the panic button by any means,” safety Ian Logan said. “I’ve been here a long time, and I don’t know what it is, but Saskatchewan, for whatever reason, has our number.”

paul.friesen@sunmedia.ca


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