Argonauts and Blue Bombers hit the field for a cold first practice ahead of the Grey Cup

It was a cold first day on the job for the Toronto Argonauts and the Winnipeg Blue Bombers as both teams took the field for their first practice in Regina ahead of the 109th Grey Cup.

Up first was the Toronto Argonauts led by running back Andrew Harris and quarterback McLeod Bethel-Thompson.

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A jam-packed Thursday at the Grey Cup Festival in Regina

The Argos took to Mosaic Stadium first, and got their first taste of Grey Cup weather, after playing in very warm temperatures in the East Final.

Chants of “It’s not cold enough” could be heard echoing through the stadium as the Argos took the field.

“I thought it was awesome,” said Bethel-Thompson. “It was cold, but it wasn’t painful, you know? I thought it was great and if the game’s like it was today, I look forward to it.”

One player who looked right at home on a chilly Wednesday afternoon was running back Andrew Harris. It comes as no surprise to anyone after Harris won back-to-back Grey Cups with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and battled the elements each year in the championship game.

Harris, who just returned from a pectoral tear in the team’s east final win over Hamilton feels confident in his fitness heading into the weekend.

“I definitely had a little bit of rust but for the most part I was pretty happy with my play and I’m just looking forward to improving on it.”

Could it be his last game though? Harris isn’t ruling out the possibility of retirement

“I’d be lying to you if I said I wasn’t thinking about that. We’ll see how the game goes and how I’m feeling. I’m not going to make any rash decisions after the game. But I’ll have to reassess what’s next for me,” said Harris.

For those representing the west, however, their practice looked a little different.

The Blue Bombers instead practiced at Leibel Field Wednesday, but they were without their most important championship piece.

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Blue Bombers without QB Zach Collaros in first practice of Grey Cup week

Although the Bombers’ star quarterback, Zach Callaros, looked alright heading off the plane Tuesday, Callaros did not take the field at the first practice in Regina before the Grey Cup.

Collaros suffered an ankle injury in the Western Final on Sunday. Blue Bombers backup Dru Brown took first-team reps Wednesday.

Bombers coach Mike O’Shea said upon arrival in Saskatchewan’s capital city that he expects Collaros to play in Sunday’s championship game.

His former teammate Harris also has no doubt the veteran quarterback will be on the field Sunday.

“He’s an absolute warrior and I saw a clip of him walking off of the plane. If you can walk off of a plane, I think he can suit up and play a football game,” Harris said.

And while there are more interviews, more parties and more people on Grey Cup week, both teams’ sole focus remains winning the championship.

The 109th Grey Cup kicks off at 5 p.m. CST on Nov. 20.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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