If there are any emotional scars from their first loss of the 2014 CFL season, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers are hiding them well.
The club completed a spirited workout at the Bison practice facility west of Investors Group Field Tuesday — work is already being done to set up the stage for this weekend’s Beyonce/Jay Z concert — and left the distinct impression the loss to the Edmonton Eskimos is well in the rear-view mirror.
"We’ve been talking about this since Day 1: we wanted guys who are passionate about playing football, guys that love to play the game," said head coach Mike O’Shea. "And if you love to play the game, it doesn’t matter where the game is, whether you’re out here, whether you’re one-on-one, your pass rush, the special teams… that’s the game, too. It’s not just on Friday night.
"The game is every competition you can make it on every single rep out here. We’ve got a bunch of guys who are in that mode and I think you saw it today. It was a fun practice to watch, so I imagine it was even quite more enjoyable being a part of it."
Watching the fun today were linebacker E.J. Kuale, safety Johnny Sears, Jr., defensive end Jason Vega, punter Mike Renaud and slotback Cory Watson. Kuale is likely going to play, but Vega, Renaud and Watson are all out.
O’Shea said he may wait one more day before deciding on Sears, Jr., and over the last two days, Moe Leggett, who missed last week’s game, was back at safety.
"He’s a pretty smart football player," said O’Shea of Leggett. "He’s smooth, smooth, smooth out there. He’s competitive, he can do a bunch of different things. We were pretty happy with Moe Leggett from the get-go, so it’s not a stretch to see him in there."
A legend passes
Bob McNamara, a former Bomber from 1955-58 and star at the University of Minnesota, passed away this week at the age of 82. McNamara, who hailed from Hastings, Minn., still holds the CFL record for most touchdowns in a game with six, scored against the B.C. Lions in 1957. He left the Bombers in 1959 and played two years with the Denver Broncos in the AFL before retiring in 1961.