Eddie ready for ‘Steele’town

The name Hamilton instantly evokes a picture of towering smoke stacks along the water’s edge, belching fire into the sky. What better place to be drafted to then, for a young man named Steele.

Read More: [url]http://cfl.ca/article/eddie-ready-for-steele-town

With the 22nd overall pick in the CFL Canadian Draft last Sunday, the Tiger-Cats selected University of Manitoba defensive tackle Eddie Steele. Steele, a Winnipeg native that saw his stock sky rocket after the East-West Bowl, was named a CIS Second Team All-Canadian in 2009 and attracted the eye of the Tiger-Cat organization at the CFL’s evaluation camp.

“He impressed us at the evaluation camp with his pass-rushing ability and his first-step quickness,” said General Manager Bob O’Billovich. “He also used his hands very well as far as swimming and ripping so he looked very good, we liked him a lot,” added O’Billovich.

Steele emerged as one of the top 10 prospects by the CFL’s Scouting Bureau going into draft day, but surprisingly hadn’t heard his name called as the second round wrapped up on TSN.

“I was stressing on Sunday because I thought for sure I was going to be going in one of the top two rounds,” said Steele. “Hamilton is a really great fit for me though, it’s not when you get drafted it’s where,” he said.

Eddie is not the only Steele to be selected by Steeltown, his father Leroy was taken by Hamilton in the seventh round of the 1984 draft.

“It’s a pretty cool story,” laughed Eddie. “Even though he didn’t play too long for Hamilton, it’s pretty special to be drafted by the same team as my dad.”

Eddie’s father did have some good advice on how to prepare for the ordeal that is training camp.

“His biggest piece of advice was to make sure I come into camp in really good shape already because rookie camp can be pretty grueling,” said Steele.

The road for a CFL rookie may be a hard one to travel but Eddie Steele can come into camp secure in the knowledge that the Ticats drafted him for a reason, and if he uses his abilities and works hard there’s no reason why he shouldn’t be on the roster come July.

“I think as an interior lineman he’s a better pass-rusher than most and hopefully he can show us some of those things and make us feel good about his potential to be a guy who can get pressure from inside,” said O’Billovich.

Steele can’t control what other players and coaches do in training camp but he knows if he puts forth 100 percent effort and does everything the coaching staff asks of him, anything could happen.

“I’m just gonna bring my motor everyday to practice and just go all out in camp,” vowed Steele.

Bert Faibish

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