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Riders expect veteran starter Harris to play against Blue Bombers despite hip injury

He might be ailing somewhat, but the Saskatchewan Roughriders expect starter Trevor Harris to play Friday night in the CFL team's home opener.
Saskatchewan Roughriders quarterback Trevor Harris (7) makes the throw against the Edmonton Elks during first half CFL action in Edmonton, Alta., on Sunday June 11, 2023. He might be ailing somewhat, but Harris is expected to play Friday night in the CFL team's home opener. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson.

He might be ailing somewhat, but the Saskatchewan Roughriders expect starter Trevor Harris to play Friday night in the CFL team's home opener.

Harris, 37, suffered a hip injury late in Saskatchewan's 17-13 season-opening road win over the Edmonton Elks on Sunday night. Harris was limited in practice Tuesday -- the Riders' first since the victory -- as backup Mason Fine was under centre with the starting unit.

Afterwards, head coach Craig Dickenson told reporters in Regina that Harris was dealing with a hip pointer but he expected his No. 1 to start versus Winnipeg.

Harris completed 20-of-33 passes for 179 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions in his Riders' debut. But Harris was injured when hit after rolling out to deliver a pass with the Riders looking to burn time off the clock.

Saskatchewan faced a third-and-six situation from the Edmonton 24-yard line with 10 seconds to play. Instead of taking a five-step drop from under centre and throwing the ball as high and far as possible, the Riders had Harris line up in shotgun formation, then roll out to his right before throwing downfield.

However, Harris was hit hard after delivering the pass. He was writhing in pain on the field and after struggling to get up, Harris hobbled to the sidelines.

Winnipeg (1-0) is coming off a 42-31 home win over Hamilton, a game that saw Bombers starter Zach Collaros finish 21-of-30 passing for 354 yards and three TDs. But the Bombers were more than just a passing team as Canadian running back Brady Oliveira ran for 113 yards and a TD on 22 carries.

Winnipeg certainly wasn't perfect against Hamilton -- the Ticats outscored the Bombers 27-13 in the second half after falling behind 29-4 at halftime. But the Bombers have proven performers in all three phases of the game and a familiarity that makes them formidable wherever they play.

Pick: Winnipeg.

Calgary Stampeders versus Ottawa Redblacks (Thursday night)

At Ottawa, the Stampeders (0-1) will be without Ka'Deem Carey (foot). Last year's CFL rushing leader ran for 43 yards on seven carries in last week's 25-15 loss to the B.C. Lions. Jake Maier was 20-of-36 passing for 165 yards with a TD and interception. Nick Arbuckle starts again for Ottawa (0-1) despite throwing three interceptions in last week's 19-12 loss to Montreal. Quarterback Jeremiah Masoli (knee), receiver DeVonte Dedmon (wrist) and running back Devonte Williams (hamstring) are all out.

Pick: Calgary.

Edmonton Elks versus B.C. Lions (Saturday night)

At Vancouver, the Lions return home after a solid victory in Calgary. Quarterback Vernon Adams Jr. was 28-of-36 passing for 300 yards and two TDs (both to Dominique Rhymes) with an interception. Taquan Mizzell added 81 yards rushing on 13 carries. For one week, anyway, Edmonton (0-1) doesn't have to deal with its CFL-record 18-game home losing streak.

Pick: B.C.

Hamilton Tiger-Cats versus Toronto Argonauts (Sunday night)

At Toronto, the Argos open their season after an opening bye. Chad Kelly begins his first full campaign as the team's starter after serving as McLeod Bethel-Thompson's backup last year. All-star cornerback Jamal Peters back returned to the club this week but it's unclear if he'll play. Bo Levi Mitchell makes his second start for Hamilton (0-1), which will look to spoil the party as the home team hoists its Grey Cup banner before the game.

Pick: Toronto.

Last week: 4-0

Overall: 4-0.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 13, 2023.

Dan Ralph, The Canadian Press