Good news, bad news on Bombers injury front
By KEN WIEBE, QMI Agency
|Bombers linebacker Marcellus Bowman is expected to be back in the lineup Friday night against Montreal after missing the first five games of the season due to injury. (Brian Donogh/QMI Files)
WINNIPEG - All signs point to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers getting one starter back for the first time this season, but they’ll be without another for the remainder of the campaign.
It was a good news, bad news type of day on the injury front for the Blue Bombers, who were back on the field Monday after enjoying the weekend off in the wake of Thursday’s 23-22 victory over the Edmonton Eskimos.
Linebacker Marcellus Bowman, who hurt his hamstring during the early stages of training camp, worked out with the first-team defence on Monday and is expected to start Friday against the Montreal Alouettes.
In case you were wondering, Bowman can’t wait to get onto the field and get physical, so much so that he actually laid a lick on backup running back Nathan Riva during one of the drills.
“Nathan was just a little practice dummy, no offence against him but I had to make sure I still had a little bit (of physical play) in me,” said Bowman, who started 16 games at linebacker in 2011 and was fifth on the team with 50 defensive tackles. “I’m trying to bring that pulse back into our team, to kind of wake up a sleeping giant.
“I can’t wait. I darn near ran onto the field last game, the crowd was so crazy. I can’t wait to go in and feed off the crowd. That’s what I love about playing here, the crowd spazzes out every game.”
Through the first five weeks of the season, the Blue Bombers have used Dustin Doe, Terrell Parker and Henoc Muamba at WILL (weakside) linebacker and while all have done a decent job filling in, having the experience of Bowman should represent an upgrade.
“We have to get the rust out on him,” said Blue Bombers head coach Paul LaPolice. “It will be good to have him flying around, if he’s ready.”
Bowman sounds like he’ll be ready, though it all depends on how his body holds up and whether he can avoid a setback.
Meanwhile, the offensive line suffered a blow as right tackle Andre Douglas is going in for surgery on his left ankle on Aug. 13, has been placed on the nine-game injured list and is lost for the season.
“We just found that out late last week,” said LaPolice. “He had a flare up on his ankle, a piece that keeps moving back and forth and it’s going to have to be surgically repaired. He’s had it before, it’s been a reoccurring thing.”
That leaves the right tackle position in the hands of Jordan Taormina, who has started the first five games and seems to be improving on a weekly basis.
LaPolice said he didn’t plan to pursue any offensive line help at this time, noting that import Shannon Boatman remains on the practice roster and that Paul Swiston is another option at tackle, though he’s been used more at guard the past few weeks.
The Blue Bombers will be without defensive back Alex Suber, linebacker Brandon Stewart and safety Ian Logan again this week.
Defensive tackle Brandon Collier (shoulder), defensive end Kenny Mainor (ankle) and defensive back Jeremy McGee (hamstring) will all be re-evaluated as the week goes on.