Blue Bombers out to Buck trend, name Justin Goltz starting QB

Frank Doyle | Updated Aug 01, 2013

Winnipeg Blue Bombers

After a lackluster start to the season, the 1-4 Winnipeg Blue Bombers have demoted veteran quarterback Buck Pierce and have named 25-year-old Justin Goltz their starting quarterback.

Pierce had been the team’s starter since the 2010 season, but has struggled this year with only two touchdown passes compared to five interceptions while completing 60 percent of his passes. His 71.9 quarterback rating is the worst of his CFL career, which began in 2005 with the BC Lions.

Now, with the Bombers preparing for Monday’s game in British Columbia, it will be Goltz taking the snaps. Goltz made his first start with Winnipeg in last week’s 37-24 loss to Calgary, but he caught management’s attention by completing 19 of 35 passes for 194 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. After that, the Blue Bombers figured it was time to start looking at the future of the organization at the quarterback spot.

“I’ll just say this: I think Justin gives us a great chance to win as he develops,” head coach Tim Burke told reporters. “This is a decision we had to make recently. It’s just a continuity thing and I think Justin had a chance to show what he could do in a game and I think he showed that he’s improved a lot from a year ago. I think he’s got a lot of upside potential and hopefully he can lead us to some victories.”

Meanwhile, this could be a devastating move for Pierce’s career. The team seems set on giving Goltz the reins to the offence for the remainder of the season and there’s even speculation that Pierce could be dropped to No. 3 on the depth chart, below Max Hall.

This shakeup might come as a bit of a surprise, but Pierce should have seen it coming. The Blue Bombers are averaging only 23 points per game and are 0-3 at home, so something had to give, especially with this pivotal game in BC coming up. The Bombers are set as 10.5-point underdogs, but maybe this announcement will give them a bit of a spark.