Lots of handshakes today at Commonwealth Stadium, veteran players seeing each other for the first time in awhile, and the new recruits, and there are plenty of them, making the rounds with players and coaches and each other. Lots of smiles today as players posed for pictures, filled out the required forms and went through physical testing, all to prove that they can hit the field tomorrow for day one of Eskimos training camp
Early indications from Head Coach Kavis Reed is that all will hit the field, “Right now medically, we feel that all the guys are ready to go”
That’s step one, next up, step two, on the field. Those players that were shaking hands today will be busting chops tomorrow, and if you are a new face, the coach says you won’t have much time to prove yourself, “The rookie camp guys should have an advantage, physically and mentally, they have had three days to get their legs under them, and we are going reinstall what we already installed in rookie camp, so if they are making the same mistakes, we probably don’t have the right guys” Reed says most players who survived rookie camp will get at least till Monday to prove that they get a chance to stay longer.
As for the vets, more is expected, but not on day one says Reed, “we are going to see mistakes, those guys haven’t played football in 6 months. There are going to be mental mistakes, but physically those guys will be flying around to set the stage for what will hopefully be a successful training camp.”
Notes; Ten year veteran and 5 year Eskimo offensive lineman Aaron Fiacconi announced his retirement. The Sault Ste Marie native had his season cut short last year due to injury, and was released by the Eskimos in February. He says he had contact with a couple of teams, but didn’t want to finish his career as a back up, so instead moved on to the real world and his job with Cord Worley Parsons. Fiacconi started his career in Montreal protecting Anthony Calvilio, and finished it with the Eskimos protecting Ricky Ray, “That’s pretty crazy knowing that you got teamed up with two future Hall of Famers, two greats, they emulate greatness in everything they do, it was a treat and my pleasure” Fiacconi played for Montreal, Winnipeg and Edmonton.
QB Eric Ward was released by the Eskimos today. He went through rookie camp, but did not show the improvement that coach Kavis Reed wanted to see, “At our minicamp we didn’t feel that his accuracy, his velocity and his mechanics were there, we felt he had regressed”
Coach Reed says three players from the rookie have separated themselves from the others, and he is looking forward to seeing them against the vets. Those players are offensive lineman Orrin Thompson, receiver Yamon Figurs and linebacker Simoni Lawrence
Main camp starts tomorrow, 2 pm at Commonwealth Stadium.
The Eskimos this Week on 630 CHED will broadcast live from Commonwealth Stadium tomorrow from 4 to 5 PM