‘It’s just too many’: Roughriders head coach on training camp injuries

With 10 days of Saskatchewan Roughriders training camp in the books, the coaching staff is starting to get a handle on who’s in the running to make the team.

The evaluation process is being hampered somewhat as a growing number of players spend time in the trainer’s room.

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The club has already lost Jordan Reaves for the season and on Tuesday linebacker Chris Judge went down with a knee injury and was helped off the field at Griffiths Stadium in Saskatoon.

Several other athletes have missed time with a variety of ailments, and while some bumps and bruises are to be expected at camp, Riders head coach Craig Dickenson is concerned about the number of players who have already been on the injury report.

“They’re legitimate. There’s hamstrings and some quads and some groins so it’s legitimate injuries and we can get them better by being in there treating it,” Dickenson said.

“It’s just too many; you’re looking for guys to watch and they’re in the training room so we’re hoping that we get a few of them back this week. We’re hoping that we get most of them back next week.”

Saskatchewan’s injury report on Day 10 was as follows:

  • Brett Lauther (hamstring tightness);
  • Christopher Judge (knee);
  • Zack Evans (groin);
  • Solomon Elimimian (calf);
  • Jordan Reaves (knee);
  • Dan Clark (car accident);
  • Christion Jones (foot);
  • Brayden Lenius (undisclosed); and
  • Justin McInnis (hamstring).

Player health will influence who travels to the team’s first exhibition game of the 2019 CFL season against the defending Grey Cup champions.

It could be a make-or-break contest for some players on the bubble, including at running back where newcomers James Butler and Jamal Morrow are battling for a single roster spot.

“They both got to show up on special teams. That is going to be their ticket,” Dickenson said.

“(William) Powell’s going to be our starting (running) back, (Marcus Thigpen’s) going to get a lot of touches and we’ve got a Canadian in (Kienan) LaFrance as our ratio guy. So one of them will make the team and a lot of it will depend on their ability to play special teams.”

The Roughriders play the Calgary Stampeders at McMahon Stadium at 7 p.m. CT on May 31.

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