‘We want to see Zach’: Argos preparing for Collaros to start for Winnipeg in Grey Cup

Photo: Matthew Johnson/3DownNation. All rights reserved.

It remains unconfirmed who will start at quarterback for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in the Grey Cup, though it’s clear that the Toronto Argonauts are preparing to face Zach Collaros.

“We want to see Zach,” strong-side linebacker Chris Edwards told 3DownNation on Thursday. “We’ve been watching film on Zach. We know his tendencies, we know what he’s good at, we know what he has trouble with. We’re ready to see him out there. We want to see Winnipeg at their best.”

Collaros left the West Final with what his team later identified as an ankle injury. He indicated after the game that he would play in the Grey Cup, though he did not participate in Winnipeg’s first practice of the week on Wednesday as Dru Brown led the first-team offence. Practice on Thursday was closed to the media.

Edwards called Dakota Prukop “a pretty good quarterback,” though he indicated that the Argos haven’t watched a lot of his film. He seemed unaware that Brown, not Prukop, was Winnipeg’s primary backup all season. When asked, he did not know what number Brown wears, nor had he watched the film of Brown’s lone CFL start from mid-October.

The fifth-year defender reaffirmed that Toronto will be ready for whoever is under centre for the Blue Bombers, though they are hoping to see the league’s reigning Most Outstanding Player.

“If it’s Brown, it’s Brown. If it’s Prukop, it’s Prukop — but we want Zach,” he said.

Brady Oliveira set a new single-game career-high in the West Final when he ran for 130 yards in a 28-20 win over the B.C. Lions. When asked how Toronto plans to handle the ball carrier’s physical running style, Edwards broke into a broad grin.

“We’re ready. We’re ready to see him. He’s a young guy, he’s been playing pretty good but we’re ready for Brady. We’ve got something for him,” said Edwards.

“We’re going to be physical. It’s what the Argos’ defence is. We’re going to be physical with all of them. They’re going to try to run the ball, that’s what Winnipeg does. They’re a physical team, too, so we’re ready to meet physicality with physicality.”

The Blue Bombers have won back-to-back Grey Cups and are currently 5.5-point favourite to win another one on Sunday. Edwards doesn’t view his team as an underdog as Toronto seeks to play up to a strong opponent at Mosaic Stadium.

“It just makes us raise our level. We’re not worried too much about who’s the favourites. We’re the favourites, we feel like we’re the top dog.”

John Hodge is a Canadian football reporter based in Winnipeg.