Blue Bomber Report Record: 3–15–0

Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

There is no 'I' in Goltz

New No. 1 QB a model of humility on a team trying to find its way

  • Print

It would make a helluva story if we could report the obvious and visible changes in Justin Goltz over the last couple of days of practice.

Something along the lines of his spirals being tighter and his reads quicker, that not one pass attempt dropped to the turf incomplete, that he barked out plays in the huddle like a five-star general and stuck out his chest like a hall of fame quarterback.

Truth is, the 25-year-old Winnipeg Blue Bombers pivot looked much the same Friday as he did last week when he made his first professional start against the Calgary Stampeders.

In short, he was the very definition of a work in progress.

Oh, there have been some shining moments, like the howitzer strikes that hit targets perfectly in stride. And then, predictably, there were some obvious errors -- like Friday's terrible over-throw of Chris Matthews, all 6-5 of him, that sharply one-hopped off the turf smack into kicker Justin Palardy's mug.

What has changed for Goltz in the last couple of days of practice isn't something that can be easily quantified but is monumental nonetheless: On Thursday, the Bombers named him their starting quarterback "from this point forward."

That's no small deal for a former NCAA Division III star who spent the last couple of years in Winnipeg watching, learning and -- most of all -- waiting. There's no looking over his shoulder now after an interception, no wondering if the next series is his last.

His days as an understudy are over and now he steps into the spotlight.

"Absolutely, this is big for me," Goltz said. "This is an exciting time for me and for this offence. At the same time, there's a lot of responsibility that comes with it.

"It hasn't been the most well-oiled machine, so there's a lot of stuff that has to be worked out in the process. It's not going to change with just one person; it's a collective effort."

Most of Goltz's answers sound like that. He's quick to make sure he puts team first.

He tends to speak in the second person rather than begin every sentence with "I." He's big on humility, but there's also a quiet confidence evident in every response.

When he's asked about the big-picture situation he now finds himself in -- the next QB candidate trying to lead this offence out of the wilderness and maybe one day authoring the end to a long Grey Cup drought -- he straight-arms the question to the ground.

His big picture is Monday in Vancouver against the B.C. Lions. Anything after that qualifies as a daydreaming.

"That's the biggest thing I feel I have to take into this week," he said. "I have control of the things that I can control and let everything else dissipate and not really pay attention to it.

"When I look at my game last week, there were some highs and lows... some stuff I could have done better and some stuff that was successful.

"Here's what I can control: building on the successful stuff and learn from the stuff that didn't go as well as planned. I wasn't fully satisfied with the way I played, but at the same time, I wasn't disappointed either.

"Some of those other young guys came out last week and did a great job, but they're playing for teams and offences that are established and are doing great. We're in a situation where we're trying to find ourselves, both as an offence and a team.

"There's stuff to work out."

Still, time is relative in pro football and just as open-ended, with head coach Tim Burke declaring Goltz would be The Man "from this point forward."

So while Goltz is trying to live in the moment, he is mature enough and aware enough to know there has to be progress. There must be wins and they have to come sooner, not later.

Maybe that understanding, in itself, represents the biggest growth in Goltz since being handed the keys this week.

"You see a guy out there, another quarterback, doing some good things and you think, 'Yeah, I could do that,' " Goltz said.

"The past couple of years has just been about patience and trying to soak in as much as I can. There's times when it's been tough and it could have been disappointing.

"But it's all worth it as I stand here today as the starting quarterback of this football team."

ed.tait@freepress.mb.ca Twitter: @WFPEdTait

bomber game day c4-5

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition August 3, 2013 C1

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

In the Key of Bart: Peladeau-Re-Mi

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • A young goose gobbles up grass at Fort Whyte Alive Monday morning- Young goslings are starting to show the markings of a adult geese-See Bryksa 30 day goose challenge- Day 20– June 11, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)
  • Jia Ping Lu practices tai chi in Assiniboine Park at the duck pond Thursday morning under the eye of a Canada goose  - See Bryksa 30 Day goose challenge Day 13- May 17, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

What Western Conference teams will emerge from the first round of the NHL playoffs?

View Results

Ads by Google