New addition to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers Adam Bighill (50) runs through drills at a pre-season training camp in Winnipeg. Bighill is poised to make his return to Vancouver on Saturday. It will be the veteran linebacker’s first appearance at B.C. Place Stadium as a member of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. But it will come after Bighill registered two interceptions, returning one for a TD, in Winnipeg’s 41-19 home win over B.C. last week, Bighill’s first contest against his former team. (Photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Bighill poised to make first appearance at B.C. Place Stadium as a Bomber

It will be a homecoming of sorts for Adam Bighill.

The veteran linebacker makes his first regular-season appearance at B.C. Place Stadium on Saturday since 2016 when he was with the Lions. But the five-foot-10, 230-pound Bighill is now a member of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, signing with them in May shortly after being released by the NFL’s New Orleans Saints.

Bighill has already made a major impact against his former team. He had six tackles and two interceptions — returning one 55 yards for a touchdown — in Winnipeg’s 41-19 home win over B.C. last weekend, earning one of the CFL’s top performer nods Tuesday.

“I wouldn’t say I spend a lot of time thinking about (return to B.C.) but I’ve definitely had it in my mind,” Bighill said. “At the end of the day it’s not a big deal but it’s a lot easier (after facing Lions last week).

“There’s a layer of difference here, but it’s the same.”

Bighill, 29, enjoyed a productive tenure in B.C. (2011-16). The CFL’s top defensive player in 2015, Bighill registered 489 defensive tackles, 69 special-teams tackles, 33 sacks, eight interceptions, eight forced fumbles and a defensive touchdown with the Lions.

Bighill has picked up with Winnipeg where he left off in 2016 with 27 tackles, second only to Montreal’s Chris Ackie (30).

“It’s been like riding a bike,” Bighill said of his CFL return. ”The toughest part was coming in and getting the terminology down.

“That took about three days and then I was back to full go.”

But Bighill expects to face a determined B.C. squad Saturday night. And that could also include a different quarterback in the form of veteran Travis Lulay, who led the Lions to the 2011 Grey Cup title after being named the CFL’s outstanding player.

“I don’t think we got their best shot,” Bighill said. “From that standpoint we’re going to be hard at work making sure we’re on top of our stuff and ready for anything they have.”

While Bighill anchored a solid defensive performance last weekend — B.C. had just 280 net offensive yards — the Bombers were also buoyed by the return of starter Matt Nichols. The 31-year-old was 16-of-29 passing for 162 yards and a TD after missing Winnipeg’s first three games due to a knee injury suffered in training camp.

Rookie Chris Streveler posted a 62.6 completion average for 615 yards with six TDs and two interceptions in Nichols’ absence. Streveler’s quick development gives Winnipeg a solid 1-2 quarterback punch, a crucial element for success in the CFL.

“Chris Streveler did some great things but Matt is a proven veteran in this league who’s shown he knows how to win,” Bighill said. “You could see what the offence did in terms of moving the ball and yardage and all that stuff.

“It was great have him back.”

Although he signed a one-year deal with Winnipeg, Bighill doesn’t have aspirations to return to the NFL.

“I think it is something I’m kind of done with,” he said. “I went down there and did some really great things and proved to myself at least that I can play in that league.

“I put it on tape, it’s out there for anyone to see. Sometimes there are things out of your control, out of your hands that don’t make sense and that’s just the nature of the game. From my standpoint I came in, I did it, I understand it and I’m just really happy to be back up here now.”

But Bighill said being with the Saints gave him something to add to his CFL repertoire.

“The styles are different so you don’t really have that same downhill game up here just because of the nature of the run plays we see,” he said. “But it’s a tool I can bring when I need it.”

Bighill has enjoyed a seamless transition in Winnipeg, which he credits to the club’s front office, coaching staff and his new teammates. Last year, the Bombers were second in the West Division with a 12-6 record and Bighill said consistency is key for the club in 2018.

“It’s all about being consistent and doing your job every play,” he said. “We’re never going to be perfect … but we (Bombers defence) have played some good games, we’ve challenged offences very well.

“We need to keep building on those things and proving we can do that game in and game out.”

Just Posted

RCMP on scene of collision near Rimbey

Hwy 53 down to one lane at collision scene

Is the fate of Red Deer’s Parsons House solely in the hands of the province?

Demolition of old police station next door to begin this fall

Fundraiser to help keep kids warm in Blackfalds

Community Warmth Fall Fundraiser

Piper Creek Foundation gets a new name

Red Deer subsidized housing program for seniors

Reveen returns to Red Deer

Presented by Friends of Red Deer Regional Hospital

WATCH: Red Deer students take part in annual run

Dawe/St. Pat’s Run reaches 40th anniversary

Uber driver suing Bucs’ QB Winston over groping incident

PHOENIX — A female Uber driver in Arizona is suing Tampa Bay… Continue reading

Thousands of fans request grand jury probe of Prince’s death

MINNEAPOLIS — Thousands of Prince fans are asking federal authorities to open… Continue reading

Man pleads guilty to ‘Field of Dreams’ site vandalism

DUBUQUE, Iowa — A man accused of driving onto and damaging the… Continue reading

Rafael Nadal to skip tournaments in Asia because of bad knee

MADRID — Rafael Nadal says he will not play in upcoming tournaments… Continue reading

Canadian crabs with bad attitude threaten coastal Maine ecosystem

BIDDEFORD, Maine — Canadians are known as friendly folks, but these crabby… Continue reading

UK lawmakers: ‘Wild West’ cryptocurrencies need regulation

LONDON — British lawmakers have backed calls for greater regulation of cryptocurrencies… Continue reading

Proposed class action lawsuit on trailing commissions filed against CIBC

TORONTO — A class action lawsuit regarding trailing commissions paid to discount… Continue reading

Saskatchewan family reunited with dog that bolted during July 2017 farm visit

MOOSE JAW, Sask. — A family in Moose Jaw, Sask., is overjoyed… Continue reading

Most Read