The Bombers continued their offseason makeover with two new signings on Friday.
First, they resigned running back Joe Smith, who was acquired midway through last season in exchange for Charles Roberts. It was also announced that the team had signed kicker Bradley Pierson from the University of North Carolina State. Mike Kelly continues to put his stamp on this team, as there are likely to be a lot of battles for starting positions at training camp.
Pierson spent last season handling the punting and kicking duties at North Carolina State and went on to earn all-conference, all-area, and all-state honours. The 22-year-old will be fighting for a starting job against Alexis Serna and Dan Giancola.
Smith gives the Bombers another dimension at running back, as his power and up-the-middle style should compliment the flashiness of Fred Reid.
In eight games last season, Smith rushed 69 times for 381 yards and two touchdowns. Back in '07, Smith led the league in rushing with 281 carries for 1,510 yards and 18 rushing touchdowns. He also helped the BC Lions capture the Grey cup in 2006.
With Smith and Reid in the mix on offence, expect the Bombers to present a formidable duo that could resemble the days of Roberts and Sellers in the backfield in Winnipeg.
Coach Mike Kelly was thrilled to have Smith back for another season. "Joe has proven his worth in the Canadian Football League," said Blue Bombers head coach Mike Kelly. "His production speaks for itself, and we're excited to witness his continual progression and production as member of our football club."