Collaros feeling good and hopes to play in West semifinal

After a weeklong break, the Roughriders have returned to practice as they get ready for Sunday's CFL Western Semi-Final against Winnipeg. However, the status of their quarterback is still a question mark.

Riders keep everyone guessing on starting quarterback for Western Semi-Final

Riders' quarterback Zach Collaros says he's feeling good and hopes to play against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in Sunday's playoff game. (Glenn Reid/CBC)

After a weeklong break, the Saskatchewan Roughriders have returned to practice as they get ready for Sunday's CFL Western Semi-Final against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. However, the status of their quarterback is still a question mark.

In the Riders' last game of the regular season on Oct. 27, Zach Collaros was on the receiving end of an Odell Willis helmet to helmet hit. 

The quarterback left the game for precautionary reasons and entered into concussion protocol.

"I feel good out there on the field with the guys." said Collaros on Wednesday after their first official day of practice following their bye week.

During the course of the late season break, Collaros passed all the tests by the medical personnel. Now it's just a matter of convincing the head coach.

"You have to show them that you can think fast and be clear out there. That's what I am going to try to do," Collaros said.

Riders' head coach Chris Jones says they will take it day-by-day with quarterback Collaros leading up to Sunday's game. (Glenn Reid/CBC)

Just in case, head coach Chris Jones gave some first team repetitions Wednesday to backup quarterback Brandon Bridge.

Jones said Collaros has "passed all the protocol. It's pretty much in the trainer's hands just to make sure." 

If he passes all that stuff and he's able to show us that he can compete, and compete at a high level, then he will play.- Chris Jones, head coach

"If he passes all that stuff and he's able to show us that he can compete, and compete at a high level, then he will play."

But if Jones remains true to form he won't disclose his starting quarterback until everybody else sees it for themselves after kickoff on Sunday.

Quarterback Drew Tate said he declined the Riders' initial offer when it was offered after Collaros's concussion back in June. (Glenn Reid/CBC)

Lured out of retirement

To cover their bases, the Riders have lured Drew Tate out of retirement from a college coaching gig in Carolina.

"I came straight from the beach. It was 75 [Fahrenheit]," joked Tate, who hasn't played in a CFL game in more than a year after retiring from the Ottawa Redblacks.

Tate, who started his career with the Roughriders in 2007, spent eight seasons with Calgary amassing more than 5,000 yards in mostly a backup role.

"If I don't get hurt, I think I would have my place in history in this league."

For now, Tate is content with collecting a playoff cheque and going back to his coaching job at season's end.