Jump to content
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...
JCon

2019-20 CFL Offseason

Recommended Posts

1 hour ago, Booch said:

as guys like Woli..Harris..Demski revel in it...Not to mention that nasty O-line who always seem to thrive in cold...weather...as seen the last 2 post seasons

Yeah a guy like Banks on a warm, dry track is definitely Speedy B. But put him in a situation of extreme cold where he relies on his speed to beat a defender & he is neutralized.. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, this is intriguing.......

 

TORONTO — An American developmental football league wants to help CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie out.

 

Brian Woods, the CEO of The Spring League, has approached Ambrosie about a partnership. Woods is offering an opportunity for some CFL teams to practise with and play against Spring League squads in September in a condensed format he says has proven beneficial to his operation.

"I think there could be an interesting opportunity here because it's not sounding good for the summer or fall season up there," Woods said. "The Spring League has been here since 2017 and many of our players have made it on to CFL teams and in some instances been very productive.

"It's absolutely of great importance to us that the CFL stays in operation."

These are troubled times for the CFL. Ambrosie said Wednesday a best-case scenario for the league is opening an abbreviated season in September due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

But a cancelled 2020 campaign also remains a definite possibility.

Ambrosie has approached the Canadian government for assistance. The league's three-part proposal includes $30 million immediately, more monies for an abbreviated season and up to an additional $120 million in the event of a cancelled campaign.

The Spring League is a developmental football operation. It consists of four teams — with 38 players on each roster — that practise jointly and play games at one facility.

Its season usually begins in March and generally lasts three weeks. Teams play two games apiece and during the off-season the league conducts tryout camps.

"It's not many games but it's enough for players to get current film," Woods said. "Most NFL teams, even CFL teams, that's all they're looking for, they want to see players in two games to kind of really evaluate them and get a good feel for it.

"We've had to find a model that would work financially so we could sustain ourselves. We reached profitability last year and expect to have another profitable year (in 2020)."

Players aren't paid but are housed in hotels and fed during the season.

"Ultimately they receive an opportunity," Woods said. "We've taken guys who've been on NFL practice squads the year before and are coming off injury.

"Getting into The Spring League was important for them to show, 'Hey I've rehabilitated, I'm healthy, I can play and I'm full go.' It's been quite valuable to NFL teams, and even CFL teams for that matter."

Woods said The Spring League has sent over 60 players to the CFL. That includes Toronto Argonauts quarterback McLeod Bethel-Thompson, Ottawa Redblacks receiver Jalen Saunders and former Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel.

The Spring League held an abbreviated '20 season that began with one of its teams playing an exhibition game in Dallas against a Japanese squad. Then all four clubs convened for three weeks in Las Vegas.

Woods' proposal calls for between two and four CFL teams combining with Spring League squads at an unspecified U.S. location for three-to-four weeks. Woods is amenable to adopting Canadian rules and playing on longer, wider fields like squads in Canada do.

"In 2019, the XFL asked us to test out some rules they were looking at for their 2020 launch," Woods said. "They paid us a low six-figure deal to work with them but we were willing to test out some rules because we're a true developmental league.

"We'd be completely amenable to utilize most, if not all, CFL rules and we could absolutely incorporate the CFL guidelines as it relates to the field specifications."

Ambrosie hasn't formally spoken to Woods but said they've exchanged emails. While the CFL hasn't closed the door on a 2020 season, Ambrosie is keeping all of his options open.

"I'm trying to keep an open mind to everything," he said. "The one quality of this job is try to make friends, build relationships and explore all options.

"I think what our governors want me to do is find a bigger, brighter future for this league. That means you've got to be open to new thoughts."

Woods hopes to speak with Ambrosie, "sooner than later."

"I think this is something that requires some planning even though we've got our infrastructure in place," Woods said. "We're better equipped to deal with the current health crisis probably more so than the traditional, bigger sports entities in the U.S. because we operate out of one location.

"We're not in multiple cities, we're not going to need to bus into different markets, we don't need air travel. We wouldn't need much time to get this up and running but certainly for planning purposes and finding an agreeable structure, I think it would be prudent to have conversations as soon as possible."

Woods said playing games with no fans wouldn't be an issue, as The Spring League did so in Las Vegas.

Woods said the two entities would operate independently. CFL teams would abide by the league's CBA, meaning this idea would also require acceptance by the CFL Players' Association.

"Any sort of operation . . . would need to take into consideration the current collective bargaining agreement in Canada," Woods said. "We'd continue to exist as one entity with our teams and they'd continue to exist as another entity but that wouldn't prevent us from playing one another and having games."

A source told The Canadian Press a CFL/The Spring League partnership hasn't been discussed by the league and CFLPA. The source was granted anonymity because the CFL hasn't commented publicly about the issue.

Like the CFL, The Spring League is looking at international expansion as early as next year.

"We're hoping to have a team from Japan and maybe a team from either Mexico or Germany take part next year," Woods said.

Woods believes TSN — the CFL's broadcast partner — could be part of the project.

"I believe it's doable and I think there could be a monetary play here with TSN potentially even if it's a limited number of games," he said. "And this isn't foreign because there was a time when CFL teams operated in the U.S.

"I think Canada needs football . . . I think it's important the CFL does something this year and is visible to some extent. Otherwise I fear for what could be ahead or what might not be ahead."

Edited by Noeller

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 2020-05-21 at 8:20 AM, JCon said:

It's certainly not to reduce the amount of coaches or players. Reduce the players and you're going to have more injuries. Pretty sure that's a bad thing.

 

This year is anomaly. Treat it as such. Get the government to cover the loss of ticket sales, concessions and TV revenue. Reduce staff where you can but don't cripple the organization. 

 

Look for two hub cities (one East, one West)  that can host the teams and the games for cheapest possible scenario. Play 8 games against teams in your division. No bye weeks but arrange it so some teams can get longer breaks between weeks. Travel costs are reduced. 

 

Winnipeg would be good because of the location of the stadium. Three practice facilities right next door, plus the stadium, means that 4 or 5 teams could practice at once. 

 

Heck, this is anomaly year and let's treat it like such. Players are going to sacrifice a lot this year, so why not look at ways of integrating practices? Get teams to line up against each other. It will give players more chances to show what they have if they're on the bubble with their team. Other teams may be interested. 

 

This is about surviving the storm. 

The CFL can't pretend it's business as usual, this season (if it happens) will be in response to a crisis, teams won't have the funds to conduct business as they have in the past, therefore they need to find significant economies. 

Here's a few ideas to cut costs.  Cut down preliminary expenses,  CFL pre-season doesn't make any money so it's an obvious target, teams  can't afford to bring in 85 players to tryout for 46 positions, that is obvious waste when you consider the cost of flying them in, feeding and housing them.  Plus keeping  players in quarantine will be more costly than usual and will put that many more players needlessly at risk only to eventually be cut.  

Cut training camp down to 2 weeks prior to the first game, scrap the 2 exhibition games and decide who's going to be on the team  before T.C. even begins.   Might suck if your team is caught up in the middle of a rebuild or just hired a new H.C....but hey we've got the Cup!  46 players + 10 reserve should be enough to start up, injury replacements can be brought in as needed during the season, not sure the point of keeping a PR squad in a shortened season, maybe cut that as well.....cuts need to be made.

 

Edited by Throw Long Bannatyne

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Throw Long Bannatyne said:

The CFL can't pretend it's business as usual, this season (if it happens) will be in response to a crisis, teams won't have the funds do to conduct business  asthey have in the past, therefore they need to find significant economies. 

Here's a few ideas to cut costs.  Cut down preliminary expenses,  CFL pre-season doesn't make any money so it's an obvious target, teams  can' ill afford to bring in 85 players to tryout for 46 positions, that is obvious waste when you consider the cost of flying them in, feeding and housing them.  Plus keeping  players in quarantine will be more costly than usual and will put that many more players needlessly at risk only to eventually be cut.  

Cut training camp down to 2 weeks prior to the first game, scrap the 2 exhibition games and decide who's going to be on the team  before T.C. even begins.   Might suck if your team is caught up in the middle of a rebuild or just hired a new H.C....but hey we've got the Cup!  46 players + 10 reserve should be enough to start up, injury replacements can be brought in as needed during the season, not sure the point of keeping a PR squad in a shortened season, maybe cut that as well.....cuts need to be made.

 

Well, they've probably signed quite a few new players that we don't know about by now. They won't be releasing anyone they think can be a difference maker. The teams won't be releasing a couple hundred players & almost 60 coaches at this point. They'll have to find other ways to cut costs. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Throw Long Bannatyne said:

The CFL can't pretend it's business as usual, this season (if it happens) will be in response to a crisis, teams won't have the funds do to conduct business  asthey have in the past, therefore they need to find significant economies. 

Here's a few ideas to cut costs.  Cut down preliminary expenses,  CFL pre-season doesn't make any money so it's an obvious target, teams  can' ill afford to bring in 85 players to tryout for 46 positions, that is obvious waste when you consider the cost of flying them in, feeding and housing them.  Plus keeping  players in quarantine will be more costly than usual and will put that many more players needlessly at risk only to eventually be cut.  

Cut training camp down to 2 weeks prior to the first game, scrap the 2 exhibition games and decide who's going to be on the team  before T.C. even begins.   Might suck if your team is caught up in the middle of a rebuild or just hired a new H.C....but hey we've got the Cup!  46 players + 10 reserve should be enough to start up, injury replacements can be brought in as needed during the season, not sure the point of keeping a PR squad in a shortened season, maybe cut that as well.....cuts need to be made.

 

All valid suggestions.....the word is that given no FA camps and no mini camps initial TC rosters may exceed 100. Dickinson in Sask says he’s looking for 3-4 replacements. 4 exhibition games  2 of them at home was a tough sell to season ticket holders. Vets loved it when it got cut down to 2 games. Hard to show your potential as a rookie given limited playtime. It needs to be run as a business....if blowing it up and starting over means it survives so be it. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Throw Long Bannatyne said:

The CFL can't pretend it's business as usual, this season (if it happens) will be in response to a crisis, teams won't have the funds to conduct business as they have in the past, therefore they need to find significant economies. 

Here's a few ideas to cut costs.  Cut down preliminary expenses,  CFL pre-season doesn't make any money so it's an obvious target, teams  can' ill afford to bring in 85 players to tryout for 46 positions, that is obvious waste when you consider the cost of flying them in, feeding and housing them.  Plus keeping  players in quarantine will be more costly than usual and will put that many more players needlessly at risk only to eventually be cut.  

Cut training camp down to 2 weeks prior to the first game, scrap the 2 exhibition games and decide who's going to be on the team  before T.C. even begins.   Might suck if your team is caught up in the middle of a rebuild or just hired a new H.C....but hey we've got the Cup!  46 players + 10 reserve should be enough to start up, injury replacements can be brought in as needed during the season, not sure the point of keeping a PR squad in a shortened season, maybe cut that as well.....cuts need to be made.

 

You need to keep enough players around, quarantined, to cover for injuries and cuts. Can't have someone injured and have to wait two weeks before a replacement can even practice. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, JCon said:

You need to keep enough players around, quarantined, to cover for injuries and cuts. Can't have someone injured and have to wait two weeks before a replacement can even practice. 

What happens if players, coaches or staff test positive?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, DR. CFL said:

What happens if players, coaches or staff test positive?

I don't know the answer to that. That's the big question - shut it down? Or stay the course? 

League has to decide that with the players, coaches and staff. And, the policy needs to be in place prior to everyone getting together. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
32 minutes ago, JCon said:

I don't know the answer to that. That's the big question - shut it down? Or stay the course? 

League has to decide that with the players, coaches and staff. And, the policy needs to be in place prior to everyone getting together. 

That is a tough one....if you are forced to shut it down early into it that would be a significant additional financial hit.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, DR. CFL said:

What happens if players, coaches or staff test positive?

I would think it’s better than opening up churches, although I guess they’re both considered

mass gatherings..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't see the players in any of these leagues agreeing to anything very soon.

Just think the CFLPA was fighting about insurance coverage for football injuries.  Now we're talking about risk of a virus that can cause organ failure, respiratory failure.  No idea what the long-term effects are even in younger stronger healthier people.  One player contracting the virus and having severe complications could lead to millions of dollars in liability.  Who is insuring these leagues and are the leagues able to pay?  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Out of boredom and desperation, I watched the 2017 CFL Riders at Ticats game this evening and was struck by several things: Henich Muamba was darned good, Brandon Bridge didn't look all that bad, and Jeff Hecht (a Rider then) was as bad or worse than he was as a Bomber. Still, it was entertaining and welcome. TSN should do more of this sort of thing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 minutes ago, Noeller said:

Am I the only one who's literally never heard of this guy before? I didn't even know we had a CFL Head Of Football Operations...

You’re right, but it wouldn’t be the first time a Greg is kept undercover.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...