CFL Pass

CFL’s non-playoff teams prepare for offseason

As the four remaining teams in the CFL playoffs prepare for the Division Finals on Sunday, the five teams sitting outside of the playoffs begin to prepare for what’s promising to be a very busy offseason.

Seemingly every team has an incredibly long list of pending free agents and even though the CFL and CFLPA still refuse to reveal player contract lengths, Gary Lawless is eager to provide the information. The list Lawless provided isn’t “official” but if you look at it and think “man, that’s long”, it’s because it is. In fact, there is a 50% increase on pending free agents from a year ago.

The new collective bargaining agreement that came into place last season allowed teams to sign players to one-year contracts without an option – a practice that has been in place for many years. There are quality players available at *every* position.

As always there will be some players who take a shot at the National Football League (Eric Rogers, Aaron Grymes, Dexter McCoil to name a few), but what I find interesting this year is the amount of stars that may have to take a pay cut: Ricky Ray, Travis Lulay, Andy Fantuz, Nick Moore, Chad Owens and Ricky Foley are all players that have been massive stars in this league but may need to accept smaller paycheques and diminished roles if they want to stay in the Canadian Football League.

Some players may need to swallow their pride but others are going to be looking for a huge payday. There is talk that Trevor Harris wants to be the highest-paid quarterback in the league and players like Chris Rainey, Jerome Messam and Andrew Harris *deserve* a huge raise.

That 28 available players sounds like a huge number, but it’s not even the most in the league. One has to assume that many of these players will re-sign with their current team between now and the deadline, but right around *two hundred players* would be looking for a new deal if free agency started tomorrow.

Sadly, it doesn’t. We have to wait all the way until February 9th at noon for the fun to start. #IsItFebruaryYet?

– written by Travis Currah