Earlier this week, I was lucky enough to have a visit with former Rider player personnel director Craig Smith, who was quick to point out the pluses in Bombers quarterback Chris Streveler’s game from the University of South Dakota.
Streveler will be thrown right into the fire Thursday night as Winnipeg hosts Edmonton in the CFL’s season opener.
Our conversation got me thinking about the Bombers situation this season. Many prognosticators believe Winnipeg will have a very slow start — and, as a result, a tough season — because of a training camp injury to Matt Nichols who may miss the first four to six weeks of the 2018 campaign.
That may not be the case.
The Bombers have a favourable schedule. After this game against Edmonton, Winnipeg faces Montreal. The Alouettes were 3 and 15 last season. After that, it’s a game against Hamilton and two against B.C.
So, after Thursday, the next four games will be against teams that failed to make the CFL playoffs a year ago.
Winnipeg could easily win 3 of its first 5 games.
I believe Winnipeg will very much be in the mix going in to the middle third of the CFL season, just in time for Matt Nichols’ return.