Blue Bomber Report Record: 7–11–0

Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

We're not Henoc-king Shea, but...

Burke thinks Muamba has more upside

  • Print

WINNIPEG Blue Bombers head coach Tim Burke was asked on Wednesday to compare the play of Bombers middle linebacker Henoc Muamba to that of another non-import middle linebacker in the league, Montreal's Shea Emry.

Both men were named on Wednesday as their team's top Canadians in 2012, but Emry also added a top defensive player nomination and Burke -- who coached Emry when the former was the defensive co-ordinator in Montreal -- was asked if he sees a younger version of Emry in Muamba.

"Physically, I'd say Henoc is faster. They're both intelligent guys. Shea obviously has more experience and is probably a heavier hitter, but Henoc will hit you pretty solidly too. I think Henoc has a chance to be better than Shea in the long run, just because he's faster."

Muamba took over from Pierre-Luc Labbe as the Bombers starting middle linebacker in Week 8 this season and never relinquished the job, going on to record 55 tackles, lead the team in special-teams tackles, take down a top Canadian weekly award in Week 13 and tie for the league lead in forced fumbles with five.

The Bombers are hopeful Muamba -- the first overall pick in the 2011 CFL draft -- can be a ratio changer for Winnipeg for years to come in a position many CFL teams use an import.

"It's definitely a stepping stone, especially coming off a season like we had," said Muamba.

-- -- --

Bombers placekicker Justin Palardy was rewarded for his field-goal accuracy this season when he was named Wednesday as the club's top special-teams player. Palardy has hit 36 out of 41 field goals this year, an 87.8 per cent success rate that would set a new franchise record for field goal accuracy if he can hold it through the final game of the season.

Palardy already owns the franchise mark, which he set in an abbreviated 2010 season when he went 26-of-30, or 86.7 per cent. "It's good stuff, but it'd be a little better if we were going into the playoffs," Palardy said.

-- -- --

Bombers defensive end Alex Hall has big shoes to fill. The last most outstanding defensive player nominee for the Bombers -- 2011's Jovon Johnson -- went on to take the league honour and make history as the first defensive back to do so.

It's very unlikely Hall will replicate that feat this season, but his nine sacks in just 14 games still put him third in the league sack race and now tops among voters on Winnipeg's defence.

But it's the games that he didn't play that were on Hall's mind on Wednesday as he discussed his nomination as Winnipeg's top defensive player.

"I know I could have helped the team get some more pressure on the quarterback and stop the run," said Hall, who missed Winnieg's critical last three games with a knee injury and will miss this week as well.

-- -- --

"I'd like to know about it today if I could. But yeah, as soon as possible...In our organization, there's three levels. Obviously the GM is in control of football operations and has the final say. And then we have the CEO on top of him, who hires the GM. And then we have the board of directors, who hires the CEO. So it all has to work down and the head coach is at the bottom."

-- Bombers head coach Tim Burke says he still hasn't heard officially whether the Bombers organization would like him back as head coach next season.

-- -- --

"I love Shea Emry. So when I say this, I'm not disparaging him: Sometimes Shea, he's got a wire that comes loose. And I don't even think he remembers that he did it."

-- Bombers head coach Tim Burke on Montreal's middle linebacker, who's gotten in hot water with the league a few times this season, including most recently when he punched Saskatchewan's Brendon LaBatte in the groin.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition November 1, 2012 D3

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


  • 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 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 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.


Make text: Larger | Smaller


Trouba talks about injury and potential for Jets

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • BORIS MINKEVICH / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS  070527 The 21st Annual Teddy Bears' Picnic at Assiniboine Park. The Orlan Ukrainian Dancers perform on stage.
  • Marc Gallant / Winnipeg Free Press.  Local/Standup- Morning Fog. Horse prances in field by McPhillips Road, north of Winnipeg. 060605.

View More Gallery Photos

Soccer: A Love Story Series

2013 Mazda 5 GX AWD at

I really, really miss it

Charline Labonte hopes to hit the pitch again when her hockey career is over



Will Connor McDavid make the Edmonton Oilers a playoff team?

View Results

Ads by Google