Location:Home > sneakers > he is considered a veteran. That kind of crept up on me

he is considered a veteran. That kind of crept up on me

Time:2018-06-12 14:17Shoes websites Click:

fill shoes Power Charlie Stampeders

Charlie Power is going into his fifth Canadian Football League season and, with 51 games of experience while mostly toiling on special teams, he is considered a veteran.

“That kind of crept up on me,” said the 26-year-old Okotoks native with a chuckle. 

But with the off-season retirement of Rob Cote, the long-time fullback who had been a mainstay at the position for the previous 11 seasons with the Stampeders, Power becomes the longest serving player among the crew of running backs.

He is also presented with an opportunity to become the next Rob Cote as the Stampeders inch closer to the 2018 CFL season.

“I learned a lot from Rob,” Power said on Wednesday following the team’s morning practice. “On the field, how to be a pro. But off the field, how to keep your body right and how to interact in the locker room and what it takes to be a pro.

“Really, I was just copying what he did for a long time. He was one of the best. That’s why he was in the league for so long. Not having him here is a little different. It feels like a fresh opportunity to try and fill his spot.”

A lofty task, no doubt about it.

Cote played 179 regular season games with the Stampeders, tying him for the most-ever in franchise history. The Cochrane High School product also appeared in 12 West Division playoff games and four Grey Cups, winning CFL championships in both 2008 and 2014.

“You never replace a guy like Rob,” said running backs coach Marc Mueller. “He was a leader in the locker-room, the guy had seen every look, no defence surprised him. So, we’re not asking to replace him — we’re asking (other candidates) Will (Langlais), Ante (Milanovic-Litre) or Charlie or whoever the fullback will be to be themselves.

“They’ve all been here for a while now … they’re veteran guys and all have lots of experience … all are capable of playing fullback for us.”

First thing’s first, however. 

Power needed to take a lesson from the offensive line — yes, you read that right. The six-foot-three, 242-pounder needed to learn a few tricks from the big men in the trenches.

His CFL experience has primarily been on special teams, where the motion is typically moving forward. However, at fullback, the body positioning and technique is crucial to block incoming defensive lineman who — more often than not — out-weigh the fullback.  

“You have to be technique-sound to be able to get it done,” explained Power. “(Cote) was really good at it. He was the master of putting himself in a good position to be able to make the block which takes a lot of experience which he had.”

“So, I guess we’re trying to make up for a lack of experience with technique. It’s been good.”

In the off-season, Power worked with running backs coach Marc Mueller and offensive line coach Pat DelMonaco on his blocking, hand placement, stepping with the correct foot, where his eyes should be when the ball is snapped.

Having started as a linebacker at the University of Saskatchewan before switching to slotback and finally spending his final years at fullback, Power already had some basic knowledge.

“I knew how it should be done and how it should look — but I just hadn’t done it enough. Motorskills-wise, I wasn’t as sharp,” he said with a chuckle. “When the bullets would start flying and I’d be in a game, it’d all go to crap. My feet would get tangled up or my hands would go outside … (the work) was needed, for sure.” 

And it gave him a newfound respect for the offensive linemen.

“For sure,” Power said. “It’s a totally different animal.”

Luckily the Stampeders have a job opening at fullback that Power will be auditioning for during the Stampeders’ two pre-season contests.

“Big shoes to fill,” said head coach Dave Dickenson. “But there’s an opportunity there. (Power) is actually pretty skilled in catching the ball, he’s our most skilled fullback/receiver. We have some decent players but for him, certainly, to try and step into a starting role is what he wants. 

“These (pre-season) games will be big.”

kanderson@postmedia.com

Twitter/KDotAnderson

foodunderwear

Copyright infringement? Click Here!