QB Prukop consults with Bombers vets before attending camp
With CBA negotiations going down to the wire, the CFLPA asked veteran pivots around the league to skip this week’s rookie camps.
So, when Blue Bombers hopefuls took the practice field on Wednesday for the first day of action, it was a surprise to see backup quarterback Dakota Prukop slinging passes.
Did the fifth-year CFL quarterback miss the memo or what?
“All the quarterbacks have talked quite a bit, the PA (CFL Players’ Association) has been involved and what it came down to is everyone’s situation is a little different,” Prukop told reporters. “You’ve got the veterans with solidified jobs, or veterans competing against other veterans. You’ve got another group, which is the group I’m in — I’m a veteran, but I’m competing against rookie guys with a new offence and a new playbook.”
“With the support of the of the other veterans around the league guys had no problem with me coming and competing for my job. The leadership on this team has been great. I reached out to Zach (Collaros) and Adam (Bighill) and checked with them because the biggest thing is you don’t want to create any kind of disruption or friction on the team.”
Prukop signed with the Blue and Gold in the off-season after spending 2021 with the Edmonton Elks. With Collaros back home in Aurora, Ont., the Bombers only had four passers on Day 1 as Prukop was joined by Dru Brown — last season’s third-stringer — Jake Floriea of John Carroll University, and Manitoba Bisons starter Jackson Tachinski.
“I have to provide for my family in a unique situation where I’m coming to this team with this amazing opportunity and I’m competing against some really good quarterbacks. The thought of putting myself at a competitive disadvantage was just really going to be hard on myself and my family,” said Prukop, a product of the University of Oregon who broke into the CFL with the Toronto Argonauts in 2017.
“I lost a little sleep over it, but after a couple conversations with Zach and some of the other veterans around the league and Adam, it really put my mind at ease and allowed me to just come out here and play.”
The current CBA expires on Saturday, one day before training camp is supposed to open. The CFLPA advised all members not to travel to their respective markets for camp until a fair deal is reached. The pre-season is slated to start May 23 with the Bombers heading to Mosaic Stadium to face the Saskatchewan Roughriders.
“Yeah, we don’t think about it at all,” said Bombers head coach Mike O’Shea on the cloud hanging over the CFL.
“Nobody out here on the field has any say in it. We’re just gonna go practise and have fun doing it.”
They’ll start thinking about it if things lead to a work stoppage. Prukop was asked if he sees it getting to that point,
“I don’t know. I’m going to leave that to the PA,” said Prukop.
“They’re in conversation and they’re doing a great job keeping us up to date. Right now, I’m going to focus on this playbook.”
Eighteen years old and still in high school, Taylor got his start with the Free Press on June 1, 2011. Well, sort of.
Read full biography