Bombers welcome back special teams demon
Bombers FB James Green was on the field for his first practice of the season, after recovering from a broken right foot, an injury that led to his off-season release. He's back with the club and hopes to improve their special teams, after he led the team with 17 special-teams tackles in 2011. (BRIAN DONOGH/QMI Agency)
James Green is thankful the Winnipeg Blue Bombers held up to their end of the bargain.
The rest is up to the non-import fullback.
Green was added to the practice roster on Saturday and was on the field for his first practice of the season after recovering from a broken right foot he suffered in training, an injury that led to his off-season release.
“I had an accident and unfortunately, it was a very difficult injury to heal,” said Green, who led the Blue Bombers with 17 special-teams tackles in 2011 and added a blocked punt. “I had to take the last couple months off because I hadn’t been able to run or to train. They gave me an indication that when I got healthy, they had me on their list. They held up their side of the deal, so hopefully I can get back on the field and hold up my side. You never want to let an organization down.”
The Blue Bombers need some help on special teams after losing captain Brady Browne (torn Achilles) for the season in a gruesome injury he suffered against the Montreal Alouettes on Aug. 3.
“I just need to come in and do my job, special teams is what I’ve been ingrained in,” said Green, who originally joined the Blue Bombers in August of 2010. “It’s been my solidarity since the beginning of my career. Hopefully, I can come back and contribute in the same fashion.”
While back home in Calgary, Green had been working three jobs while trying to get back to full health and is happy to be taking a reprieve from the “real world.”
“I’ve been working at the bank, managing a night club and training high school kids,” said Green. “When you go back to the real world, you have to try to find the same amount of income. I had to find three jobs to do so.
“Football is important.”
Blue Bombers head coach Paul LaPolice initiated contact with Green six weeks ago and will monitor when he might be ready to step back into the lineup.
“I wanted to know where his progress was,” said LaPolice. “With the injuries (to Browne, Rene Stephan and Anthony Woodson), we’ve taken a hit (on special teams) and if James is moving well enough and maybe ready this week or the following week, he goes on the roster and he’s a guy that can run down and tackle people.”
The Blue Bombers are back in action on Thursday against the 3-3 Hamilton Tiger-Cats.