I'd like to say that tomorrow one of the highly anticipated sporting events on the calendar goes down but that would be exaggerating a fair bit. The average sports fan doesn't know its going on and most couldn't likely name you any of the top prospects. Regardless, the CFL Draft is tomorrow and I'm excited. Not sure if I should take that as a good or bad sign about where my life is trending.
Last week it looked like draft boards across the league might end up in the recycling bin as pretty ever top Canadian prospect got invited to an NFL mini-camp. To be more specific the NY Giants pretty much just called up the entire CFL top scouting bureau rankings and invited every single one of them. In the end it ended up being much ado about nothing as none of the prospects ended up getting contracts or invites to main camp. There are a couple mini-camps left to go but its looking more and more like only 3 Canadian prospects will be risky heading into the CFL Draft.
The first is DL Christian Covington. He was drafted in the 6th round by the Houston Texans and has already signed a 4 year deal. Needless to say its unlikely he ever comes north and if he does it won't be for many years. If I were a GM Convington would be worth a 6th/7th round pick but nothing more. He may never end up in the CFL but neither do most 6th round picks. RB Tyler Varga will also have some risk. He signed a 3 year deal with the Indy Colts as an undrafted free agent. He's far less risky than Covington but the general thought is that Varga will stick for a year or two minimum. He would be worth a 3rd or 4th round pick. Lastly, OL Brett Boyko (another in the long line of Saskatchewan OL products) signed a free agent deal with the Eagles. A few months ago he was projected as a surefire NFL player but his stock has steadily tailed off. He still has the tools to make the NFL but I could see a team willing to risk a 2nd or 3rd round pick on him not making the cut.
Everyone else so far is up for grabs and that means we are likely to see an early run on O-linemen. Mateas, Groulx, Chung, Ruby, McEwen. All seem available with next to no risk so they will be in hot demand come draft time. Word is Hamilton is already trying to trade up as they don't believe the good OL will be their when they pick at #8. They are not the only team trying to do that and you can bet the Riders are among them. The #6 may be one too late for the top end OL they covet.I expect some movement of the first round picks come Tuesday. I just hope it doesn't get as crazy as it did last year when pretty much every pick got swapped.
We will have to tune in tomorrow night. If you are a draft junkie like me, or just desperate to discuss something football related that doesn't relate to the firmness of balls join me for my 7th Annual Live Draft Day Blogging. Join in to discuss the picks, analyze the moves or just make fun of people.
I will end today with my annual Mock Draft. This year I will only be doing the first two rounds. Last year I was crazy enough to attempt a full 7 round mock. To be perfectly honest after round 3 it was nothing but wild ass guessing and the later round predictions ended-up being as accurate as a Troy Smith deep pass. I can't promise this year's version will be any more accurate but it will feature less wild-ass guessing.
Rider Prophet Mock Draft
1 - Ottawa - OL Alex Mateas - The top draft prospects are
O-linemen, Ottawa needs O-linemen. Makes too much sense not to happen.
2 - Winnipeg - OL Suhk Chung - Better protection for Willy is one of Kyle Walters' top priorities (that and replacing the Etch-o-Sketch defense), Chung is a physical interior lineman and that's just what Winnipeg needs
3 - Toronto - OL Danny Groulx - Might be tempting for Jim Barker to take a receiver but they need to build depth at OL.
4 - Montreal - OL Sean McEwen - For me this is the wild card pick of the first round. Logic would say Montreal continues the run on OL but my gut tells me Jim Popp might trade down and nab a D-lineman. They don't historically draft receivers and its too early for a DL to go, so if they keep the pick.
5 - BC - OL Jacob Ruby - I could see Buono taking Chris Ackie here under normal circumstances but his OL really needs help so can't afford to get fancy.
6 - Saskatchewan- OL Karl Lavoie - Tough draft spot for the Riders, they will likely miss out on the top end OL. That means they either need to reach for a less heralded OL prospect or go a different route. if they keep the pick I think they go OL but trading down to get 2nd rounds picks looks very liekly unless one of the first 5 teams doesn't take an OL.
7 - Edmonton- DB Trevaughn Campbell - Hervey agressively targets guys he likes and Campbell is one of those guys
8 - Hamilton - WR Lemar Durant - Ticats really want an OL and may trade this pick and a Cdn DL like Brian Bulke to move up and get one. If they keep the pick I can't see them letting Durant slip bye them given the injury to Spencer Watt and the offseason loss of Guigere.
9 - Calgary - OL Brett Boyko - This is likely a long-shot but the Stamps have depth everywhere and could afford this risk.
10 - Ottawa - DB Chris Ackie
11- Winnipeg - WR Nic Demski
12 - Toronto - LB Byron Archambault
13 - Montreal - DL Daryl Waud
14 - BC - RB Shaquille Murray-Lawrence
15 - Winnnipeg (via Sask) - LB Nick Shortill
16 - Edmonton- DL Maxx Forde
17 - Hamilton - OL James Bodanis
18 - Calgary - WR Addison Richards