WINNIPEG —; The Winnipeg Blue Bombers were the big movers and shakers in CFL free agency for the second year in a row. The football club added a total of seven players in the first 24 hours.
“Good day. At the end of the day you never quite know how its going to shake out,” Bombers General Manager Kyle Walters said. “At the end of the day a lot of things went our way, so it was a good day and I think we’re a better team today.”
Among the seven players the Bombers signed was receiver Ryan Smith. He comes to Winnipeg after playing his first two professional seasons with the Saskatchewan Roughriders.
“I was excited to hear from the Blue Bombers,” Smith said. “It was kinda of a no brainer once it came to it, who to sign with, and I’m excited to be a part of this organization.”
READ MORE: Winnipeg Blue Bombers sign seven new players
Smith, 24, made 59 catches for 991 yards with seven touchdowns in the 2015 season. The signing re-unites Smith with his old teammate Weston Dressler who might have played a small roll in Smith also joining the Bombers.
“To be able to play with Weston again is gonna be…I just learned so much from him,” said Smith. “Playing with him and just about this game and everything. He maybe influenced me a little.”
Smith is listed at only 5′ 7″ but size is just a number for this diminutive receiver who’s been told before he’s too small.
“I’ve heard it throughout my whole life,” Smith said. “It’s one thing that kinda motivates me and I’m never going to back down. I’ve always been taught hard work is always going to pay off. And that’s what I do. I try to work really really hard. It doesn’t matter what’s presented in front of my face, I’m going to try to persevere over it.”
“He’s going to lay it on the line every single game,” Walters said. “Ryan Smith plays football the way we want to be known as a football team. Tough, hard nosed, he competes, he’s the kind of player I believe our fans will fall in love with.”
Smith hails from nearby Wahpeton, North Dakota. It’s only a short four hour drive to Winnipeg for his friends and family.
“My friends that I have in Fargo, they’re really excited,” Smith said. “It couldn’t have worked out better.”
WATCH: Blue Bombers G.M. Kyle Walters discusses free agency