The Roughriders didn’t only take a loss against Winnipeg on Saturday, they took significant personnel losses as well.
Several members of the green and white went down during the match up against the Bombers and some of them will not return for the remainder of the season.
Head coach Chris Jones confirmed on Tuesday afternoon that offensive lineman Dariusz Bladek and defensive lineman Mic’hael Brooks – both of whom had to be carted off the football field – are done for the season with unspecified injuries.
The Roughriders will also be without the services of defensive back Matt Elam against Calgary on Saturday, though his injury is expected to be short term.
Zack Evans also didn’t practice on Tuesday, but Jones expects that the defensive tackle will suit up on the weekend.
It was a short week for the Roughriders who had to play the Edmonton Eskimos on Oct. 8 and turn around to play Winnipeg barely five days later, but Jones won’t use it as an excuse.
“I’ve got to evaluate exactly how we prepare for those weeks, make sure we’re not working them too hard but again that’s not the reason we lost the football game I can assure you of that,” he said.
Jones also confirmed that centre Dan Clark – who was injured against Edmonton – is out long-term and possibly for the rest of the year.
The Roughriders did get some reinforcements, however, with their first-round pick Dakoda Shepley signing with the team Tuesday.
Shepley was cut by the New York Jets at the end of August but it took about six weeks to get him to Saskatchewan.
“I’ve just been training, I’ve been going to the same gym I was going to when I was training for the combine out in Michigan. I’m there three days a week and then I’ve been running and staying in shape because the worst thing you can do is lose your edge and when you get a call you’re no good anymore,” Shepley said adding the Roughriders were in touch with his agent for several weeks leading up to the signing.
Shepley won’t slide into the lineup right away, however. Jones said 2016’s first overall pick Josiah St. John will play in place of Bladek this week.
Receiver Jordan Williams-Lambert also returned to practice after an injury saw him miss the game against the Bombers.