BC release Bighill to pursue NFL, still own his rights

The BC Lions announced Friday that Adam Bighill has been granted his release from the club in order to pursue NFL opportunities. The transaction is the result of a clause in Bighill’s latest contract, which allows him to explore opportunities down south between now and January 27th, 2017. Should Bighill not catch on with a NFL club, he will remain with the Lions through 2018.

[url=http://www.bclions.com/2016/12/09/bighill-released-to-pursue-nfl-signed-by-lions-through-18/]http://www.bclions.com/2016/12/09/bighi ... hrough-18/[/url]

Not sure how a CFL player under contract can tryout for another league? Isn't that why they become free agents? If Bighill signs a NFL contract, will he still have a CFL contract? I highly doubt it. Bighill would have to "officially" released from the CFL to sign in the NFL with the Lions having no ties to him. Then if Bighill came back to the CFL the season after, what penalty could the Lions impose on him if he chose to sign with another CFL team?

It looks like with Bighill, it's not an actual release, just an out in his contract and if he doesn't land a job, his previous contract with the Lions kicks back in.

I didn't think the CFL had RFAs but it looks like this was negotiated between his agent and the club so I presume the CBA allows this.

Well, if Bighill still has a contract with B.C. he hasn't been "released" (as claimed in the tweet). Rather, he's been given permission by the Lions to tryout in the NFL until Jan. 27th. At that point, either he returns to B.C. to play out his contract or is released to sign in the NFL (or presumably as a free agent, he could sign another CFL team, like happened to the Argos for a player they supposedly released for an NFL tryout this spring). Not sure how the CFL approves of member franchises letting player's under contract tryout for other leagues?

Farhan LaljiVerified account ?@FarhanLaljiTSN 2m2 minutes ago
Farhan Lalji Retweeted
Jonathan Jennings will have a similar window after 2017

Listening to TSN 1150 this afternoon and they said that BC no longer has his rights.

I hate it when our stars leave.

I hate the NFL. They consider the CFL to be semi-pro minor league.

Yet they raid our talent. :thdn: :thdn: :thdn:

I have said this before. If a spring league could get up and running the NFL would focus on that league and not the CFL.

I just shake my head. Every time a proposed new league is mentioned the average CFL fan panics.

WLAF and XFL will put the CFL out of business. :roll: :roll: .
MLFB, help the CFL is doomed.

No, another league is not a threat to the CFL. The NFL raiding the CFL is.

I guess we will not see Mitchell and Jennings around very long.

[i]You make some good points Brian. And you are 100% correct that our league has survived, even thrived after all of those failed USA leagues.

But, keep in mind that many american players want the chance to play in the NFL. Can you blame them? They will make a lot more money. Allowing players to work out for NFL teams in a pre defined (and short) window of time, allows them to chase their NFL dream. It also encourages those players to sign with CFL teams, knowing that they will have chances to try out for the NFL. Better to have them sign a CFL contract and play here, than to remain free agents in waiting...

Besides, most of these players, probably 9 out of 10, don't get offered an NFL contract or roster spot and come back to their CFL teams. It seems like a good risk for CFL teams to allow these NFL windows. [/i]

The NFL has been raiding our talent since before any of those leagues were thought of, and the CFL is still going strong. I'm not saying I like it either, but I think most fans understand the situation and continue to support their local teams.

Are they "raiding" our talent or is it our players making the choice to leave the CFL and try to catch on with an NFL team to make a lot more money. From what I have seen it's not the NFL that is up here trying to recruit our players it's guys that are trying to sell their resumes to any NFL team that will listen.
Most won't make it, guys like Bighill who are all-stars here will find that there could be four or five players who are as good or better than him vying for the same position.

Solo’ tried out for the Vikings in 2012 and was cut by the team in August of that year. He came back to the Lions when he failed to sign with another team. Bighill might be in a similar situation next year - we shall see.

Well that's a loss for the Lions.

I think he is good enough for the NFL but at 28 he may be on the wrong side of the age equation for a rookie. But he will open a few eyes with his ferocity and athleticism. I say he sticks somewhere down south.

Yep, I'll bet some team signs him, if only to run downfield on the kickoffs and look mean (...as the kick sails through the endzone.) :roll:

Let's not forget Doug Flutie who signed in the NFL at nearly 36 after eight seasons in the CFL. He played for several more years in the NFL including as a starter in Buffalo and San Diego. Also note 5'9" LB Sam Mills who joined the NFL at 27 and amassed over 1300 tackles over the next 12 seasons.

Yes you guys are right with all of your points.

The CFL will continue to be strong.

I get an American wants a chance to play for more $$$$.

However, I still do not like it.

We used to do it to them.

Farhan LaljiVerified account
?@FarhanLaljiTSN
#BCLions Adam Bighill has agreed to a 3 year (futures) contract with #Saints. He will receive a signing bonus.

Saints quickly becoming Canada’s NFL team.
Players include CDN Dave Onyemata, former CFLers D Breaux, E Harris, Hightower, Bighill.

Not Happy :x

Good for Adam! :thup:

These players that have left for the NFL basically "fit in" with the rest of the players in the CFL. I can't say any were so exceptional that they stood out far above the others. All good players. What does that tell us about the quality of the League?

True. It should be noted though that these players have only signed with NFL teams; they haven't made them yet (although with the signing bonus given to Bighilll, I would expect him to at least crack the roster. They're likely to put him on special teams, at the very least).

But yes, there is not that big of a disparity between the two leagues. Richie Leone was on local radio today singing the league's praises and saying how much respect NFL scouts and GMs have for the CFL.

Respect for Canadian football is at an all time high from the pro level all the way down to the high school/minor league level. This is somewhat becoming a golden age of Canadian football, and the grassroots talent coming up is only getting better...Canadian kids are going to play at prep schools in the States, dominating, then pulling off scholarships to schools like Michigan, Penn St, Oklahoma St, Syracuse etc. Our talent is only look down upon by the bigot fans who have no idea what they're talking about.

The results will be higher profile college guys heading here earlier to get some playing time then also decent NFL castoffs heading here asap to try and remake their image. Canada is like the land of opportunity for players, if you come here and perform, you will very very likely get a look from the NFL.

Just wish more casual football fans would realize all of this.