Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Veteran Receiver Ken-Yon Rambo to Make First Start with Toronto Argonauts

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Veteran Receiver Ken-Yon Rambo to Make First Start with Toronto Argonauts

Article excerpt

Rambo to make first start with Toronto Argos

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MISSISSAUGA, Ont. - Another first for Ken-Yon Rambo.

On Monday, the veteran receiver made his debut with the Toronto Argonauts. On Saturday, Rambo will make his first start with the CFL club, lining up at slotback when the Argos (5-4) host the Hamilton Tiger-Cats (3-6) in a Labour Day rematch.

"I'm feeling really good about the offence and learning the schemes," Rambo said following Friday's walkthrough. "My body felt great last week, it feels good now and I'm heading in the right direction.''

Rambo's return as a CFL starter is significant considering in June he was released by the Calgary Stampeders while recovering from tendinitis in his Achilles tendon. It was a bitter pill for a player who was very productive in Alberta, registering 406 catches for 5,995 yards and 39 touchdowns over seven seasons, including a Grey Cup-winning campaign in 2008.

Rambo arrived in Toronto shortly after being released and spent more than two months watching the Argos practise and attending team meetings while receiving treatment, all without pay. Rambo's sacrifice and patience were rewarded Monday when he made his first appearance of the season as a backup, registering two catches for 16 yards in the club's 33-30 win over Hamilton at Ivor Wynne Stadium.

Rambo said he never once doubted that he'd resume his CFL career.

"Never a doubt," he said emphatically. "Everyone had their doubts because they weren't in my body, they don't know who I am.

"I know what my body can do, I know what I can do mentally."

And in Rambo's mind, that means still having the ability to beat a defender downfield and haul in a long pass from Argos starter Ricky Ray.

"It's going to come, man, it's going to come," he said with a chuckle. "I don't have to whisper nothing to Ricky, Ricky knows what to do.

"He loves throwing that deep ball."

Ray enters action as the CFL's second-leading passer with 2,699 yards and having completed an impressive 69.2 per cent of his attempts -- tops among the league's starters. But he has thrown nearly as many interceptions (nine) as touchdown passes (11).

Ray figures Rambo will need a little time to get in sync but expects the six-foot-one, 207-pound receiver to be in top form in time for the pivotal late-season contests.

"It's tough," he said. "We're already halfway through the season and this is his second week getting out there and getting into the offence.

"He's not going to be as sharp as the other guys but what he gives is physically he's a pretty good player. He's big, he's fast, he can run good routes, he gives us a lot at that position. It's just that over these next few weeks he's going to continue to get better."

Argos head coach Scott Milanovich has been pleased with how quickly Rambo has picked up the offence.

"He's a smart guy, he's picking up the offence very, very quickly," Milanovich said. …

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