Head coach Orlondo Steinauer is confident the Hamilton Tiger-Cats will have receiver Brandon Banks back when they face the Ottawa Redblacks on Saturday afternoon.

Banks, 33, has missed four of Hamilton's past five games with a rib injury. But Steinauer said Wednesday Banks has practised well the last two sessions.

"It's good to see him out there moving around and catching a few balls in the air on special teams and also being out at receiver," Steinauer told reporters during a video conference. "He looks a lot more comfortable, he looks a lot more pain-free, but when you take your first hit, it's always the tell-all.

""I'm confident that he'll play. I think we've probably given it the best amount of time that we can give it as far as for him to heal up and be healthy."

Banks has registered 22 receptions for 172 yards this season. He had 112 catches for 1,550 yards and 13 TDs in 2019 when he was named the CFL's outstanding player.

On Tuesday, Hamilton activated quarterback Dane Evans from the six-game injured list (lower-body injury). Steinauer said Evans wasn't showing any negative effects physically from Tuesday's practice and all signs point toward Evans suiting up Saturday, with veteran Jeremiah Masoli expected to get the start.

"The thing with Dane is you have to look him in the eye because he wouldn't tell you anyway, he's just a tough guy," Steinauer said. "I don't see any side-effects there at all so I see it as Dane likely to suit (up) for us this Saturday."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 20, 2021.