We interrupt this string of filler posts on obscure CFL franchises from over a decade ago to bring you some actual news.
The big news was the announcement the other day that Omarr Morgan had been released. The news was very bittersweet. On one hand there is a sense of sadness at having to part ways with a man who will go down in history as one of the best CBs this franchise has ever seen. One the other hand there is a sense of happiness at part ways with one of the clear weak spots of our team last year.
Me and Omarr have what you would call a love hate relationship. From when he joined the team in 2000, up until 2006 he was one of the premiere defensive backs in the CFL. A perennial all-star and a hero in Riderville for such feats as the game winning blocked FG against the Eskimos in 2005 (which still ranks among my favourite moments at Mosaic).
Then in 2007 he made a decision with his wallet rather than his heart. No one begrudges him for doing that. I'm sure most people would have left for the money that they offered him. Unfortunately the end result was that he missed out on a Grey Cup ring in '07 with the team he loved. I'm sure Omarr would hand back all that money and more in a heart beat for that elusive ring.
In 2008 (after being cut from Edmonton) Morgan returned home to the Riders. But he wasn't the same. During his time in Edmonton he developed a bad habit of giving a 10 yard cushion on every single play. Thus I began developing a vicious hatred for the one time great.
In 2009, Morgan suddenly and unexpectedly enjoyed a resurgence. I actually had to briefly set aside my hatred (no small feat for someone as opinionated as me). Unfortunately that resurgence was short lived and Morgan was back to being terrible in 2010. After watching the first 6 years of Morgan's career, its seems almost unbelievable that he would end his tenure with the Riders as one half of the worst CB duo in the league.
Thinking about my hatred for Omarr got me thinking about another hatred I had in the secondary... my biggest hatred: James Johnson. I got to thinking that the Johnson hatred can actually be blamed on Morgan. Were it not for his decision to sign with the Esks, nobody would even know who James Johnson is. Damn you Morgan!
Seriously though, while it was clear that the time had come for Morgan to go, I still have to tip my hat to him because he is without a doubt one of the great players in this franchise's illustrious history.
Watch it will be just Morgan's luck that we win the cup again in 2011.
We also cut Willie Byrd... I neither had love or hate for him... just indifference.
The news keeps getting better for our secondary as we announced that James Patrick, who just so happens to best safety in the CFL, has signed a contract extension. Add to that new deals for Frazier and McKenzie and we should have a solid secondary for years to come.
CFL Ins and Outs
In: LB Malik Jackson (contract extension)
In: LB Jamal Johnson (contract extension), DL Yahia Dalloul, OL Cody Husband, LB Nathan Kanya, WR Rory Kohlert (free agent signing)
Out: LB Otis Floyd, RB DeAndra Cobb (cut)
In: LB Joe Lobendahn (contract extension)
In: QB Jarious Jackson, DB Stanley Franks, DB Korey Banks (contract extension)
In: WR Harry Von Kann (free agent signing)