Friday, May 31, 2013

Friday Round-Up

This week marked the first time I have ever been jealous of Bomber fans... I mean not their lack of hygiene, family trees that branch and successful sports team (they can keep those). What I was jealous of was that they had rookie camp and we did not. I'm very football deprived at this point and the thought that other teams have opened camp and we have not is killing me.

Fortunately the wait will be over on Sunday. Sure it will be in Saskatoon but that is better than nothing at this point. I would settle for camp in Uzbekistan with training camp reports being delivered only via Etch-a-Sketch. Be honest, you would too.

Aside from the looming John Chick issue (which I expect will sort itself out by SUnday), the Riders finalized their training camp roster by signing all 7 draft picks, QB Tino Sunseri, DB Johnny Tawalid, OL Kyle Hill and the 2013 Official Rider Prophet endorsement OL Jose Valdez. I realize that traditionally it is a DL prospect whose hopes I ruin with this endorsement but none of the DL recruits spoke to me this year. Valdez did, mainly because he reminds me of the coffee guy and his donkey... that and I'm still not sold on Pat Neufeld so I guess I better cheer for someone.

While I will of course be glued to every shred of info coming out of Saskatoon there will be a few things a will be watching closely:

Healthy Legs - Rob Bagg and Jock Sanders will both be back on the field hoping to mount a comeback from injuries. Having just one of those 2 back would be huge for our offense. If by some miracle they can both stay healthy all year it would be massive.

D-line - Shologan is back, George is liekly back. Beyond that it will be a new group rounding out the 6 man rotation. Foley will be one of them. Many still doubt he's the playmaker he showed in 2009 but I think he will make some believers out of them. Guys like McElveen and possibly Chick are also in the mix for the other spots but don't forget about guys like Mick Williams, David Veikune, Kenny Rowe or even newcomer Will Davis. The position has the biggest unknowns heading into camp.

Back-Ups - In a lot of respect most of our starting spots are locked up so the battler will be for the depth positions. Does Levi Brown wrestle the #2 sport away or does Willy prove to be too much to handle? Who ends up backing-up at offensive tackle? Who back-ups Butler at safety (Newman, McCall, someone else)? We have a ton of Cdn LBs and no longer start one so who out of Tristan Black, Sam Hurl, McCullough, Crawford etc.. survive?

These are just a few worth mention. Bring on some football

Monday, May 27, 2013

Monday Morning Sentimonies: Bring On Football

Maybe its because we've only had two and a half weeks of spring but its hard to believe that training camps will open across the league this weekend ushering in the start of a new season. Our months of football-less suffering we soon be over (unless of course you cheer for Winnipeg, in which case your football-less suffering is likely to continue for many more months).

In a  move that is a negative for Regina residents (but a positive for the employers who expect productivity out of them), training camp will be held in Saskatoon. I get that this is Saskatchewan's team and its certainly a good thing to help build that mentality... but I'm petty and so starved for some football that I've taken to recreating plays with Prophet Jr's little people toys. I unfortunately will have to hold out until the preseason game.

The Riders were busy last week making last minute changes to the training camp roster. WR Lyle Leong Jr. was traded to Hamilton for DL Jermaine McElveen. On the surface this seems like a steal, since McElveen had 6 sacks last season and 8 three seasons ago with the Als. He's a versatile veteran DL who will be a welcome addition to our roster. One of two things likely led to his low price. Either this was a salary dump by Hamilton or they simply had no intent to use him this year and decicded to get something rather than simply cutting him. My bet is the salary one since McElveen's 6 sacks tied him for the team lead last season. Regardless we will gladly take him.

As a result of this move, and our general offseason spending spree, the Riders had to make some cuts and clear some cap space. The victims were Tristan Jackson and Jay Alford. Jackson was as surprising as when Ricky Martin came out of the closet. I liked him, especially when he was one the only people who actually seemed to give a shit during that train wreck of a 2011 season but he simply could no longer justify his hefty contract. While he was a surprisingly decent DB he wasn't good enough to be a fulltime starter (especially with our offseason acquisitions) and while he was a good returner he wasn't worth what we were paying him. It was a numbers things and he came out on the wrong end. I'm sure he'll catch on somewhere else (the Als have already shown interest).

Alford was a surprise to me. He came into camp late last season and I wrote him off at the time (and was justified when he was sent home to get in better shape) but he came back and turned into a solid player in the interior DL. He even took over longsnapping (and I honestly can't think of another import snapper).  I get the sense Alford wasn't all that motivated to return. I think he saw the CFL as a springboard back into the NFL and while it looked briefly like that would occur  it hasn't yet. While Alford is a loss, with guys like Mick Williams and the addition of McElveen, I don't think it is a massive one. It's actually surprising how unconcerned I am about almost completely replacing our DL from last season.

Buckle your seats, prime your liver and fire up your home defibrillators... the 2013 season is about the start.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

I'm Back

Apologies for the unplanned lack of posting over the past two weeks. I realize that many of you depend on my analysis and irreverent commentary to get you through the day... especially with training camp so close to opening. I was going to leave one of my other staff members in charge while I was busy but the monkey is unionized and said it wasn't in his job description, Media Consultant was going to charge me a consulting fee, the hobo doesn't own a computer and I was unable to find a program that converts notes written in dirt on discarded pizza boxes to a text document. To his credit, Man in the Bush did offer to handle postings but most of what he wanted to write about would have made Sergio Garcia look like a decent guy by comparisson.

But anyway, enough my problems, let's talk football! It's time to get caught up on what's been happening

- The big question on everyone's mind is John Chick. I get asked almost daily if he is coming back here or not. We are still in a holding pattern. Chick is hoping to catch on in the NFL but if he doesn't he is coming here. I bet we have a verbal agreement on salary so the Riders know exactly who needs to be cut to make room for him. They even appear to be holding his old #97 vacant as it is currently the only number in the 90s not assigned according to the roster. Odds of Chick returning go up with every day that passes.

- The Riders have also been busy rounding out their training camp roster with the addition of DB Reshard Langford and LB Anthony Heygood who both attended the rookie mini camp in Florida. They also brought back Kevin Regimbald-Gagne who we drafted last year but sent back to school for his last year of eligibility and newcomer Matt Brown, .  While most of the prospects look intriguing one that I absolutely hate is RB Dede Dorsey. Why we are even bothering wasting a spot on him is beyond me. I said the same thing about DeShawn Wynn last year and look how that turned out. Let me put it this way Dorsey wasn't good enough to beat out Kenton Keith for a spot on the Colts back in 2007. Give the spot to someone with at least a shred of potential for goodness sake.

- Brent Hawkins retired. Sad to see him go but given the state of his shoulders its probably a good move for him. He's got life after football set up (personal training and coaching the Regine LFL team). I liked him but I don't consider him a huge loss at this point. His 7 sacks as a Rider are only 1 more than Odell Willis and 2 more than Shomari Williams. How's that for perspective?

- Word is season ticket sales have topped 28,000 this year. Holy $%&#!!! is all i can say. I know this is a Grey Cup year but this is a team whose season ticket not so long ago consisted of 7 stubborn old guys and had to bribe people to come to the stadium with free tickets and promises of Whoppers. This is amazing and has me jacked up for home games this season.

Training camp is only a few more days away from opening. (If you are like me just reading that sentence got the adrenaline going and gave you the urge to shotgun a Pilsner).

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Sponsored Video: Savour Every Moment

Here's a new short film called "Savour Every Moment" it apparently debuted at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York City but I'm not nearly cultured enough to know about that... and if you read this blog I doubt you are either.

This film is all about pets and inviting us to discover the joys of life and the fun they have. Personally I have a hamster and fish (neither by choice) and they aren't nearly as active or exciting as the ones in this film.

Anywho, you should check it out. If you are a pet lover you will enjoy it.

Disclaimer: This post has been sponsored by Petcurean, but all thoughts are my own

Monday, May 6, 2013

Thoughts on the CFL Draft

The CFL Draft went this morning and while I'm sure the lack of my live draft day blogging left a gap in the coverage we all seem to have survived.

Many people have been asking me me thoughts on the Riders' draft day and to be honest I thought it was bad. About the only way the Riders could have managed to screw up the first round was by taking another interior lineman and that's exactly what they did. It was probably for the best I was on a cell phone at the time as it did not contain an emoticon that accurately captured my anger. Don't get me wrong Cory Watman is a great prospect (one of the top OL in this class) but we already have 3 quality guards and an established centre... drafting another interior OL didn't even crack the top 3 in terms of need especially when quality players were available at other positions: DL, safety, offensive tackle... you know the places where we currently don't have depth. Adding to what is currently our only real area of strength in terms of Canadian depth was a poor use of a top pick. 2nd or 3rd round, fine but not 4th overall especially when we didn't have a second rounder to address the other needs.

I was also not a fan of trading our 3rd round for three 5th rounders as we then did. Given that we had relatively few picks and our Canadian depth is not all that abundant, I get the idea of trading for more picks. The problem is that in doing so we were left with 1 pick in the top 37. You can't expect to build quality Canadian talent like that (the Bombers tried that for years under Taman unsuccessfully). It's choosing quantity over quality. Plus I bet half those 5th rounders don't even make the team so the net gain will be minimal at best. A better use of the 3rd round pick would have been to draft Chris Mercer. Not just because he is a local kid but because he is a quality prospect at OT... something we actually need.

Even more maddening was that we used our first of four picks in round 5 on.... you guessed it, an interior OL!! Matt Vonk is another prospect I like but on this team we already have so many interior OL I don't see what we do with him... unless Cortez has developed a new offensive play that requires 2 centres and 4 guards. We just seem so intent on drafting guards and could are less about actual needs. I don't get it.

Here are some random thoughts on the other draftees:

WR Alex Anthony - As a 5th rounder i actually like this pick. Well regarded receiver that will hopefully push for a spot.
DL Levi Steinhauer - I know nothing about him other than he comes from the U of S, I somehow doubt he will provide the depth along the DL that we need.
TE Spencer Moore - Another one I don't know much about but is well regarded as a special teams player.
LB Thomas Spoletini - This was a weak year over for LBs so forgive me for not expecting much from one taken this late. Think Kevin Regimbald-Gagne from last year.
OL Eric Armitage - This one is actually a tackle so on the basis of actually fulfilling a need I like it. As a 7th rounder my expectations are low but you never know.

Monday Morning Senitmonies: Draft Day Silence

Sorry to those of you looking for a post today but there will liekly not be one. Normally I would be doing live Draft Day Blogging but thanks to some scheduling conflicts (not the least of which is the CFL doing the Draft on a Monday) I will be in class all day tomorrow and generally unavailable for draft commentary. I`ll catch up as soon as I can.

Honestly, with some of the top end talent in available in Round 1 short of blowing our pick on Brett Jones (I`ll say it again... we dont need another local interior OL), I don`t think we can go wrong in round 1. Guess we will see.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Guest Writer

Regular reader Ray did up an article on a few different topics including Tebow and the CFL draft and asked if I'd post it up on my blog. The beauty of having 7.3 readers is that you can grant their requests pretty easily. Also, this whole having other people write stuff for me is way easier than doing it myself. What's the best kind of sourcing? Outsourcing.

Any way have a read...

CFL : Tebow in CFL(?), CFL 2013 Draft, Kyle Quinlan Canadian Quarterback 

By: Ray Beauregard

  The CFL’s all-time leading passer, Anthony Calvillo, is coming back for another season with the Montreal Alouettes but he is 40 so it’s time the Alouettes start seriously thinking about grooming a replacement. Calvillo though, is like fine wine, he doesn’t look like he is even close to being done but age indicates otherwise even if he can keep playing, there comes a day to retire form football. Montreal owns the rights to former Heisman winner, Denver Bronco, New York Jet, and first round draft pick, Tim Tebow who was just released from the New York Jets. He only threw eight passes this past season and in 2011 had a horrid 46.5 completion percentage, but did have 12 touchdown passes compared to six interceptions and an eye-popping 660 yards rushing and six rushing touchdowns while also leading the Denver Broncos to that playoff upset of the Pittsburgh Steelers. Maybe Tebow will get one more shot in the NFL but the chances are really up in the air, 50/50 that an NFL team will take a chance on him. The CFL on the other hand would welcome him with open arms, although he would obviously have to compete for the back-up job behind the future hall of famer Anthony Calvillo but he would be great trade bait for Montreal and a team like the Winnipeg Blue Bombers could really use him and would give up a lot in a trade if Tebow was 100 percent playing in the CFL. I think he would be great for the CFL, his name alone sells tickets, and I think he would do great in the CFL even though CFL and NFL great Warren Moon doesn’t think so. Moon told a Houston radio station KILT-AM that Tebow wouldn’t succeed in the CFL because of his weak arm strength. Moon’s argument that the field is bigger but if anything I think that would be a huge advantage for a player like Tebow. The CFL’s bigger field will be easier for Tebow to throw the ball, he would have way more room to maneuver on a bigger field which in turn will give him more time to make the right throws.
--- Well if the whole Tebow thing doesn’t work for the Als, they still signed Canadian quarterback Kyle Quinlan this past off-season, which is an interesting topic. Quinlan was in camp with the Als after going undrafted in 2012. He went two for four for 45 yards in his only action but was released during the team’s final training camp cuts. Quinlan re-signed with the Als this off-season after a terrific 2012 CIS season where he took McMaster to their second straight Vanier Cup and won the Hec Crighton Trophy awarded to the best football player in the CIS. With the Als signing of Quinlan, he becomes just the second Canadian quarterback in the CFL, the other being Brad Sinopoli of the Calgary Stampeders and he is the team’s third quarterback. The Alouettes signed Quinlan for two-years so they obviously have plans of grooming him behind Calvillo and who better to back-up and learn behind than the professional football’s all-time leading passer.
--- Calgary Dinos defensive tackle Linden Gaydosh is getting a lot of hype as the potential first overall pick in the upcoming 2013 CFL Draft. The Hamilton Ti-Cats could draft the 6-foot-4, 314 pound Gaydosh from Peace River, Alberta with the first pick on Monday. Alberta has a lot to offer in the 2013 draft. Minor football through High School football is just amazing in Alberta. There’s some fellows in the CFL that I played with and against including stellar Eskimos LB Corbin Sharun, super skilled B.C Lions WR Marco Iannuzzi, B.C Lions kicker Hugh O’Neil, and Montreal LB Curtis Dublanko. When Dublanko gets his shot in this league, he is going to be one hell of a player, nobody ever hit be nearly as hard as Dublanko did. Then there are some guys I played with and against that deserve their respected shots this season either as draftees or free agent signees including Saint Marys talented receiver Kevin Wuthrich. The former CJFL Edmonton Wildcat was signed as an undrafted free agent with the Edmonton Eskimos in 2009 and scored a receiving touchdown in the only game action he seen during the pre-season before being released in the final cuts. Well after a couple years of maturing into a very solid receiver for the Saint Marys Huskies, the speedy Wuthrich would be a valuable non-import receiver for any CFL club. Another fellow is another Saint Marys player, Safety Neil King. King is the younger brother of LS Ryan King of the Edmonton Eskimos and was a 2011 AUS All-Star. Both Wuthrich and King played on the Sherwood Park high school football powerhouse Bev Facey Falcons. And a sleeper to
---  K well here is my First 5 pick 2013 CFL Mock Draft
1, Hamilton -- DT, Linden Gaydosh, Calgary – If D’Aguilar didn’t just receive two NFL tryouts, I’d say Hamilton should draft him or maybe they should anyway. Lots of Canadian players that sign in NFL and get drafted anyway eventually come to CFL after a couple NFL seasons mainly on the practice roster. Argos could get Cory Greenwood after he was released by Kansas City, Toronto drafted him 3rd overall in 2010. Gaydosh will provide good Canadian depth on the defensive line and will be a beast one day along with Laval’s Arnaud Nadon-Gascon.
2. Winnipeg – OL, Matt Sewell, McMaster – Sewell is too good to pass up here even though he just signed with the NFL’s Tennessee Titans. Again, Sewell could be one of those players to get into the CFL a few seasons after being originally selected. Blue Bombers are in dire need of help on offensive line, just look at all the sacks and injuries to Buck Pierce. If they want immediate help on offensive line then they should select Eastern Michigan’s Corey Watman or Regina’s Brett Jones.
3. Montreal – WR, Seydou Junior Haidara, Laval – Might as well stack up at either offensive line or receivers, can never have too much Canadian talent in the CFL. Can’t argue with the Rouge et Orr Vanier Cup winner Haidara at this spot.
4. Saskatchewan – DL. Stefan Charles, Regina – Offensive line is a priority and again, I’ll go back to Greenwood argument and add to it with Matt O’Donnell, who is now an Eskimo after a couple seasons in the NFL and after being drafted in the 2nd round, 15 overall of the 2011 draft.  Charles, who played his college ball at Regina, signed with the NFL’s Titans. If that happens not to work out, Charles would be a great fit in Riderville.  
5. Montreal – DL, Andy Mulumba, Eastern Michigan – Finding a defensive tackle should be a priority and Popp doesn’t seem to care if they already signed in the NFL judging by his pipeline of picks which include the Broncos Phillip Blake and the Dolphins Vaughn Martin. The Montreal product Mulumba has too much talent to bypass at this spot, even though he signed the NFL’s Green Bay Packers. It will either be Mulumba or Ben D’Aguilar at this spot.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

CFL Mock Draft Version 2

Since my first go at this on Monday, the CFL decided to add a 7th round to the draft. I have rethought a few selections. I also found a couple errors. One was the omission of Jesse Joseph (the guy is on the CFLs’ top prospects list, whoops).   I was also advised of an error in one of my picks in Ryan White, turns out he was drafted last year (at the least he wasn’t dead). So here is an updated version of my mock draft with slightly fewer glaring errors.

Round 1
1 – Hamilton – DL Linden Gaydosh: Gaydosh is still the consensus #1 pick. Many offers being made by teams for this pick (Edm offered Ted Laurent) and some talk that the Ticats would prefer Sewell over Gaydosh. I still bet they take him but regardless Gaydosh will be the top pick
2 – Winnipeg – LB Mike Edem: Still no sense on what the Bombers will do. They really want Gaydosh but if they can’t trade up for him, Edem is the logical choice given his versatility and immediate impact.
3 – Montreal (via Edm) – WR Seydou Junior-Haidara: He’s the best receiver in the draft, he’s local and Als need a receiver. It’s a no-brainer. They could probably wait and take him with their next pick but won’t want to risk losing him.
4 – Saskatchewan – DL Ben D’Aguilar: With Ricky Foley and Keith Shologan starting on D-line, the Riders are in need of Cdn depth. Despite having 2 NFL tryouts lined up, D’Aguilar is worth the risk.
5 – Montreal – OL Matt Sewell: His NFL deal drops him a few spots but Als can afford to be patient and with their all Canadian OL, taking the best available OT is a smart move.
6 – BC – OL Cory Watman: BC really wants a top end DL but there are a few of those to be had. Top end OL prospects are a scarcer commodity. Their interior OL is old and injury plagued… adding Watman to last year’s picks Norman and Fabien will shore the OL up nicely.
7 – Calgary – DL Brent Urban: With no real pressing needs, the Stamps can afford to wait out Urban’s last year of college. 
8 – Toronto – OL Nolan McMillan: The Argos have a history of making high risk picks early on players who they rarely see for a couple years (if ever). McMillan is tremendous prospect at tackle. He has a year left of college but that won’t concern the Argos.
9 – Ottawa – OL Brander Craighead: With the franchise’s first ever pick, they will wisely look to starting stocking the shelves along the OL.

*** A few caveats on Round 1. As I mentioned the #1 pick is being shopped around and may change hands. Edmonton still wants to move up. BC moving up to add another first rounder still makes sense but is looking less likely. One way or another expect the 1st round order to undergo some change.

Round 2
10 – Edmonton (via Ham) – OL Brett Jones: If Hervey can’t get into the first round to get a top end DL he will take the safer option and try and strengthen the OL.
11 – Winnipeg – OL Matt Vonk: DL is an option for this pick but still think shoring up the OL is a better option.
12 – BC (via Edm) – DL Ellie Ngoyi: Patience will pay off here for the Lions as they will get the DL they need to back-up Westerman without using a 1st rounder to get it. Ngoyi is a raw talent but the Lions will gladly develop him.
13 – Calgary (via Sask) – OL Matt Albright: The Stamps are one of those teams that believe you can never have too many OL. Albright’s stock has been on the rise.
14 – Montreal – OL Hunter Steward: The Als will continue stocking the future OL shelves by taking a promising redshirt junior in Steward.
15 – Hamilton (via Edm via BC) – OL Chris Mercer: Mercer’s stock has risen to the point where if a team wants the budding young OT they will need to act early. After passing on Sewell (who they reportedly want) in round 1, Mercer will be a nice consolation prize.
16 – Calgary – LB CO Prime – The Stamps have lost a couple special teamers/depth LBs this past offseason (Antwi, Calixte) and need to re-stock. Despite likely having to wait until September to get him on the field, Prime is the best available and the Stamps can afford to be patient.
17 – Toronto – DL Andy Mulumba: Toronto needs help on the D-line with all their offseason departures. They are willing to risk Mulumba's NFL interests.
18 – Ottawa – DL Connor Williams: After taking an OL in Round 1, the RedBlacks will look to start addressing the other side of the trenches.

Round 3
19 – Hamilton – DL Jesse Joseph
20 – Winnipeg – DL Stefan Charles
21 – BC (via Edm) – LB Nicolas Boulay
22 – Saskatchewan – OL Josh Prinsen
23 – Montreal – DL John Miniaci
24 – Edmonton (via Ham via BC) – WR Yannick Morin-Plante
25 – Calgary – WR Mike DiCroce 
26 – Edmonton via Tor – WR Natey Adjei
27 – Ottawa – DL Kalonji Kashama

After round 3 it’s pretty much a crapshoot, so take this for what its worth (particularly when we get to round 7)
Round 4
28 – Calgary (via Ham) – DL Mike Klassen
29 – Winnipeg – DB Cameron Wade
30 – Montreal (via Edm) – WR Simon LeMarquand
31 – Edmonton (via Sask) – RB Steven Lumbala
32 – Montreal – OL Jakob Piatrowski
33 – BC – DB Patrick Chenard
34 – Calgary – DB Tolu Akinwumi
35 – Hamilton (via Tor) – DL Hosam Shahin
36 – Ottawa –LB Bo Lokombo

Round 5
37 – Hamilton – Dl Jean Alexandre Bernier
38 – Saskatchewan (via Win) – DB Jermaine Gabriel
39 – Edmonton (via Sask via Edm) – DB Kris Robertson
40 – Edmonton (via Sask) – DL Brent Wheeler
41 – Montreal – WR Steven Alli
42 – BC – OL Shane Bergman
43 – Hamilton (via Cal) – OL Kevin Croft
44 – Toronto – OL Robert Ravenbergen
Round 6
45 – Hamilton – DB Michael Daly
46 – Winnipeg – WR Chris Dobko
47 – Montreal (via Edm) – DB Mike Spense
48 – Calgary (via Edm via Sask) – OL Eric Armitage
49 – Saskatchewan (via Edm via Mtl) – WR Nick Anapolsky
50 – BC – RB Brendan Gillanders
51 – Edmonton (via Cal) – OL Cameron Thorn
52 – Toronto – K Brett Lauther

Round 7
53 – Hamilton – WR Alex Anthony
54 – Winnipeg – FB Isaac Bell
55 – Edmonton – LB Kareem Ba
56 – Saskatchewan – FB Matt Burke
57 – Montreal – OL Taylor Servais
58 – BC – DB Ryland Smith
59 – Calgary – DB Matt McGarva
60 – Toronto – WR Guillaume Rioux

Thursday, May 2, 2013

CFL Draft: What Do The Riders Do?

With just days to go before the CFL Draft, a big question among the 7 people in the province who care about the draft is "What Will The Riders Do?". The draft is always really difficult to predict but I will do my best... I mean it is kinda my gimmick.

The Riders now have 5 picks after the league added a 7th round to the draft yesterday. Believe me if Taman had known about this in advance he likely would have traded the pick away. Four picks seems to be his max... though I guess anything is better than the year we only had 2 picks and used them both on Regina Rams.

So we have a 1st, 3rd, 5th, 6th and now 7th. So what guys will we be targeting in the draft? Well logically given that we plan to start 2 Cdn DL and this is a draft will a lot of high end DL talent we should be targeting a DL with out first pick. That said apparently we have our eyes set on LB Mike Edem. now don't get me wrong Edem is a hell of a talent and many expect him to switch to safety (which would allow him to back up Butler) but I think that would be a mistake. If we had a 2nd round pick that we could use to address our DL need then I would be fine with it but we don't and by the 3rd we won't be getting a top end DL. Ideally D'Aguilar would fall to us at #4 but that's not a guarantee. Another option is Ellie Ngoyi as he is the next best available DL who has not signed an NFL. I like that option but don't see it. I'm betting on either Edem or D'Aguilar with our first. Just please don't take Brett Jones. Another local interior OL is not what we need.

Unfortunately our draft strategy is severely limited by 2 factors. 1) we have few picks and 2) our Cdn depth is fairly thin. That means that we can't afford to use a pick on a redshirt junior (which sadly leaves a lot of great talent of our draft board) and we can't risk taking guys who won't be in camp (i.e. Charles, Sewell, Mulumba, Prime) which also takes some talent of our board. Its a vicious cycle that we can't break out of. We can never build for the future.

Outside of DL we also need OL depth, particularly at tackle. If I asked you who our back-up tackle was I'm not sure you could answer, which highlights the need. We should be able to land a quality OL in the 3rd. It would be great if a guy like Chris Mercer slipped into the 3rd. But if not him another tackle like Matt Albright or Josh Pinsen. We could use another safety (though my preference would be to wait until round 5 for that since we already have Butler, Newman and McCall.

With our 6th rounder I would like us to take a flyer on a receiver. Like Bamba last year, a decent one will fall to the 6th. Nick Anapolsky, Stephen Adekolu or Anthony Alex perhaps. Our bonus 7th rounder should be used on a fullback. There are 2 promising ones and I bet one will last until late in the draft: Isaac Bell and Matt Burke. A couple DLs who might be available late and of interest too are John Miniaci  and Jean Alexandre Bernier.

That's how I see it but I guess we will have to see what actually goes down.