Running backs John Santiago and Brady Oliveira have a bond many men might be resentful of.

Teammates for four years at the University of North Dakota, Santiago from Minneapolis, Oliveira from Winnipeg, the two became close buddies.

“He’s instructed me things he’s by no means advised all and sundry. I’ve informed him things I’ve never told everyone,” Santiago changed into pronouncing, Wednesday. “We proportion a lot. A lot in common, too. We don’t come from the first-class backgrounds. We have our personal tales, however our memories type of integrate. We’ve been via a lot collectively.”

That’s why it became extraordinarily difficult for Santiago to look at Oliveira cross down with a damaged leg in the Blue Bombers’ victory over Edmonton final week.

“I surely turned it off for a 2nd,” Santiago said. “And then I went on Twitter and noticed something approximately how he went down and were given carted off the sphere. I turned at the TV and rewound it a little, and saw him holding his proper leg. It’s virtually tough to peer everyone moves down. It’s the worst part of the game.

“It’s even harder to peer one in all your proper buddies go down like that.”

Santiago, who tried out for the Bombers this season, however, was cut in training camp, talked to Oliveira after the harm, and Oliveira told him to live prepared, in case the Bombers known as him again.

He turned into at home planning his fourth of July birthday celebration together with his girlfriend when the phone rang.

“Sure sufficient,” he stated. “They called me.”

Wednesday, Santiago become lower back in Winnipeg, introduced to the exercise roster as coverage.

“We liked him here at camp,” head train Mike O’Shea stated. “Just couldn’t hold all people.”

Canadian Johnny Augustine is on the roster because of the backup to starter Andrew Harris.

As terrible as Oliveira’s harm changed into – he required surgical operation and could pass over a maximum of the season if no longer it all – Santiago has absolute confidence the promising 21-year-antique, Winnipeg’s 2d-round draft select this year, can be returned.

“I recognize Brady thoroughly, and I recognize such things as this can no longer forestall his mentality, will not prevent his power,” Santiago stated. “Because he loves this sport a lot. And I’ve seen him come again from accidents before, and he comes back even higher. He’s going to be a new beast.”

Harris has the same opinion and has a few non-public enjoy to attract on. He suffered a separated ankle and torn ligaments in a recreation 5 years in the past.

“He may be very young still,” Harris stated. “I had comparable harm in 2014 when I become 26 and I replied well with it and came returned. I don’t have any doubt that he’ll be back in complete shape very quickly.”

Harris becomes making plans to visit Oliveira after Wednesday’s practice.

“I’m going over there to drop off a few flowers and a cheque for him,” Harris said. “It’s difficult for all people to undergo an injury. He becomes very enthusiastic about this season, as all people in which it’s the first 12 months. And it’s going to be a tough pill to swallow. But you want to learn on this business this is something you need to deal with.”

FEAST TO FAMINE

Two landing catches in the first recreation, now not a sniff of the ball in the subsequent.

Receiver Drew Wolitarsky has had very distinct outings, however, says that’s just life whilst you’re a part of a talented receiving corps.

“Happened last year, happens to every person,” Wolitarsky said. “You’ve simply got to make a contribution to how you can. At the top of the day, a win’s a win, and that’s what you have to keep reminding yourself … and preach to the guys who aren’t getting balls to preserve centered and hold your head up because the subsequent sport you could get seven catches.”

Wolitarsky becomes proud to make a contribution a key block on one of Lucky Whitehead’s two touchdown receptions.

“It’s cool when something you did opens something up for any individual else. That’s the tradition we preach here.”

Setting egos apart is a large a part of what O’Shea preaches.

“I don’t suppose it’s every so often. It’s all of the time,” the instruct stated. “Understanding your role and going properly past accepting your role and studying a way to thrive in it is constantly important. And it’s vital for each man on the crew, not only for ability function guys where they’re combating for touches.”

MEDLOCK BIDING HIS TIME

It’s an awesome component Justin Medlock punts, too. Because he’s had just one subject aim try inside the Bombers’ first two video games.

“Yeah, crazy,” Medlock stated. “It occurs. They all are available bunches. Right now we’ve just been doing an absolutely desirable task on offense putting it into the quit sector. That’s an amazing thing.”

When he’s not lining up three-recommendations, Medlock loves supporting his group with subject function as a punter.

“We gained the field role sport ultimate week, so I’ve gotta preserve it up.”

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