Monday, February 12, 2024

Monday Morning Sentimoines: Successful Tampering

I hate the term “won free agency”. Teams that “win” free agency generally are terrible (good teams don’t need to sign a bunch of FAs because they already have a talented roster) and tend to not win the actual season.  That said I do think the Riders had a very successful tampering period. I had listed 5 primary needs and we managed to address 4 of those is a big way. I don’t think that suddenly makes us Cup contenders. I do feel better about our roster than I did a week ago.

I said needed LBs. We went out and got the best LB available in Jameer Thurman. Dude is a flat out stud and will definitely be a strong anchor for our D. We also got Adam Auclair. Basically he is a younger Teitz. Between Thurman, Auclair and Reavis we dropped the average age of LBs significantly.

I said we needed OT help. We went out and got the best one available in Jemarcus Hardrick. In the process we righted a historical wrong. Hardick was a Rider in 2015 and not deemed worth keeping in the new Chris Jones regime. To use a Jones term, he has been “moderately successful" since. Did we overpay? Probably, but when your option is spend a lot or suffer another season trying to fix out OT issue in-house, I say its money we needed to spend.

I said we needed a CB. We went out and got Jalon Edwards-Cooper. He kinda got overshadowed a bit in BC playing alongside some bigger names guy. I think he can be an impact player. The stat is that he did not give up a TD in 2023. That's good right?

I said we needed DL help. We went out and got Malik Carney. I’m still not exactly sure why we seem to be moving on from Robertson but Carney has 12 sacks over the past 2 seasons and I think instantly adds a proven pass rusher to our rotation.

RB wasn’t a priority but we went out and got Ouelette. He’s the second best RB in the CFL and will bring a hard nosed bruising style to our run game that we haven’t had in a while. I was always a big Morrow fan but I do think Ouelette is objectively a bit better.

This haul has Rider fans more excited for the season than soccer moms were to see Usher perform at half time. We still have some holes to fill but O’Day and Mace definitely did good job of aggressively going out and addressing our biggest needs.

Long road still ahead of us but good first step.


Anonymous said...

Good review. Adding Hardrick, Thurman, Ouellette, Carney & Edwards-Cooper while dropping Tevan Jones, Wieneke, Moncrief & Marshall is a win. With all the hoopla around signing Schoen & Oliveira in Winnipeg, though well deserved, it doesn't "improve" a team which had them last year. The only new guys are Streveler & Noah Hallett while likely dropping Hardrick, Houston, Walker, Jeffcoat along with Dru Brown & a couple of retirees. So if we're looking at the West at this point we are getting closer to our next door neighbours. They have some rather big holes to fill with only 2 unknown OT's on the roster to replace Hardrick for example.

It's always nice if your opponents have net losses to go with your gains. You have to see things in relation to what's happening elsewhere. Good job so far.

Govind said...

What was the hole you feel we didn't address. Back QB? Another receiver? Still haven't replaced Cousin Leonard.

Rider Prophet said...

Anon - Will be interesting to watch how Winnipeg fares this season. Definite hit to their talent and the ones they have (bighill, bryant and Jefferson) are getting older.

Gov - It's mostly about depth at this point. I think we could find 24 starters with what we have but back-ups get dicey. Micah was a great add. I think Cdn OL depth american receiver and linebacker are still places where depth would be nice.

Dan said...

Nice analysis Prophet!

I’m with you on putting a question mark on the Ouelette signing. Didn’t feel like a priority. Hoping they didn’t overspend on that one. He’s played some good ball but I struggle to recall examples of free agent signings of import running backs that have been impactful. The success of an RB in the CFL is more a factor of the talent on the oline, offence design , play calling and coaching than the person carrying the ball.