After waiting for the first 12 games of the season receiver Brandon Zysltra will see his first action under lights Friday as the Eskimos host the B.C. Lions on The Brick Field at Commonwealth Stadium.
Zylstra will come in for receiver Cory Watson who injured his leg during last week’s loss to the Saskatchewan Roughriders and is on the six-game injured list.
Zylstra expects to perform well on Friday.
“I’m ready, I’ve been waiting for this for awhile.” Zylstra said. “I just got to take advantage of it now. When it comes to game-time I zone out. I don’t notice the crowd, I don’t notice anything like that so I’m just going to play football and do what I’ve been doing in practice.”
Zylstra played college ball at Concordia-Moorhead in Minnesota. In three seasons Zylstra caught 120 passes for 1,932 yards and scored 18 touchdowns in 29 games. He also recorded 394 rushing yards and scored five touchdowns and added 39 kick returns for 885 yards.
Zylstra recorded nine catches for 107 yards in the pre-season and was placed on the Eskimos practice roster following training camp. Zylstra says he made sure he put in good performances in practice.
“Well coach told us from day one to practice as if your the starter,” Zylstra said. “That’s what all of us have been trying to do. You know we’re studying, we’re in all the meetings, and doing everything the starters are doing. You never know when you’re going to be called up so you got to be ready.”
Another lineup change for Friday sees defensive tackle Don Oramasionwu back as he will play his first game since suffering a torn tricep in the pre-season which required surgery. Defensive tackle Jabari Hunt will come out.
The Eskimos will look to break a three-game losing streak and improve their playoff chances. They are six points back of the final playoff spot in the West. The Eskimos best chance at a playoff spot is likely through the crossover into the Eastern Division. The Eskimos are tied with the Toronto Argos for third place in the East.
Kick-off Friday on The Brick Field at Commonwealth Stadium is 8pm, 630 CHED will have the pre-game show at 6pm.