Winnipeg Blue Bombers to start QB Dru Brown against Calgary Stampeders

Photo: Neil Noonan/3DownNation. All rights reserved.

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers have named Dru Brown as their starting quarterback for Friday’s game against the Calgary Stampeders as Zach Collaros continues to recover from a neck injury.

Brown took over the controls from Collaros partway through last week’s game and threw for 307 yards and four touchdowns in a 38-29 victory over the Edmonton Elks. Dakota Prukop will serve as his backup against Calgary, while Collaros has been listed as the team’s third-string passer. CFL rules stipulate that teams must have three quarterbacks on the roster for each game and Winnipeg doesn’t carry an extra passer on the practice roster.

Brown signed with the Blue Bombers in 2021 after going unselected in the 2020 NFL Draft. He has since dressed for 29 career games and completed 64.9 percent of his passes for 909 yards, 10 touchdowns, and two interceptions. He has made one previous start in the CFL, losing a late-season game to the B.C. Lions last year by a score of 40-32.

Collaros was injured on a hit from Edmonton defensive lineman Kony Ealy, which occurred when Collaros was struck in the head after throwing an interception to Loucheiz Purifoy. The play did not draw a penalty for roughing the passer and the ruling on the field was upheld following a challenge by Blue Bombers’ head coach Mike O’Shea.

The 34-year-old received attention from trainers before leaving the field under his own power. He jogged to the locker room accompanied by a trainer moments later and watched the second half from the sidelines in street clothes. He did not participate in practice with the team this week.

Winnipeg didn’t make any other changes to their roster from last week as defensive back Desmond Lawrence, return specialist Janarion Grant, and special teams ace Mike Miller remain on the six-game injured list.

The Blue Bombers (7-2) are scheduled to visit the Calgary Stampeders (3-6) on Friday, Aug. 18 with kickoff slated for 9:00 p.m. EDT. The clubs previously met in Week 5 as the Blue Bombers came away with a 24-11 victory at IG Field.

Photo courtesy: Winnipeg Blue Bombers

John Hodge is a Canadian football reporter based in Winnipeg.