Traditionally the bombers are least likely to make waves during free agency. Loyalty and re-signing current guys are their priority. Almost like they're afraid to dip into the FA Pool.
Obviously, they won't go after Franklin, Harris or Bridge at QB - they'll roll with Nichols and at least one of the current hobos.
Harris & Pinky Flanders are locks to start the season. They won't spend additional money on high paid FAs when they can sign American hobo to min. CFL salaries.
Defensively the bombers have a crying need for a shut-down middle linebacker - and several are available, including Bear Woods. I wouldn't expect Walters to make a move on anyone here.
The bombers also need a shut-down cornerback. Don't see more than one in current list. They'll be of belief that coaching can correct deficiencies in their d-backfield. I won't.
But the real crying need is receiver. Here's the list of current FA's -
Lemar Durant *
Bombers really don't have a vertical stretch game without Darwin Adams in the lineup. Without him, other teams could load the box and make trouble for Harris & Nichols (which Edmonton did). Even with Adams the bombers need at least one additional vertical stretch guy. Demski would be an excellent hometown add - but he's really not a natural vertical threat - more a short to intermediate flanker/scat back.
Bombers should really make a move on one (or more of the top 4 guys on above list)
Zylstra, Arcenaux, Walker or Carter - although 3 of the 4 may be attending NFL camps.
To sit on their duffs - that's akin to losing ground while other teams build. I've already predicted a win decline for the bombers. They'll have a bigger decline by ignoring obvious problems.
......Don't see us making a play for nfl wannabe's like Zylstra,Walker or Carter but I do think we need another guy who can stretch the field like Adams....Arceneaux would fit the bill and/or Jackson (who is not an fa but 'could' be released by Mont.)...Speedy little Banks would fill 2 needs...a 'burner returner' and receiver....Says NOBODY in this league can cover him...towards the end of last year, watching Bank's play,he was beginning to convince me...Also said he won't re-sign in Ham. if Austin is still around and it looks like Kent ain't going anywhere... Just as big of a priority is a stud middle linebacker...Shoring up the middle would give the whole d line a lift and enable them to play up to their ability not worrying about covering for a near-do-well....I'd like to see another defensive back brought in as well to push our current lot...I see we have the fewest number of fa's to re-up in the league and of those, a few are almost certainly going to be retained...
....Don't know what the hell is going on with Ritchie Hall's status...I think if anyone pops up worth a salt we'll make a play for him BUT you just never know with 'ol loyal to a fault' O'Shea...He hangs on to mediocrity or medical cases for far too long and unless Miller hits him with a 'get this done' I fear Hall will be with us for another inept performance.
I'd want Dressler back as my #3 receiving option. This group is too small as a whole, we need bigger, younger bodies.
DB/KR Kevin Fogg
Versatile guy, just don't wanna see him playing anymore LB.
OL Manase Foketi
DB T.J. Heath
By all means.
LB Sam Hurl
LB Kyle Knox
Special teamers, not defensive starters. This position needs an overhaul right across the board.
QB Dan LeFevour
I'd keep him around just for short yardage duties where he excels.
LB Maurice Leggett
Is he going to he ready to go by the start of next season?
Big shoes that will be nearly impossible to fill. The best Bomber defender the past two seasons.
DT Drake Nevis
FB Christophe Normand
CB Chris Randle
Gotta bring back this guy too.
DT Jake Thomas
Valuable roll player.
DE Jamaal Westerman
He could be a luxury at this point. It would be nice to have 3 ends capable of getting to the QB, I just don't think stacking up at end is as important as bringing in another corner, half or LB.
LB Ian Wild
Perhaps the only servicable/salvageable part of the LB core.
.....Strike Noel Thorpe off of our list of 'maybe' D coordinators...he just signed on with the Redblacks.....Are we even looking for a replacement for Hall????I know one thing IF we aren't ,and we see the same D with the same result we've seen for the last few years, then I think we'll have to move on from the current gang.
That's infuriating Papa. Not that we didn't land Thorpe - we didn't even attempt to interview the guy fcs!
Historically the bombers tend to take the period from Grey Cup week to early New Years off. Holidays, family time. Surprised they had the chutzpah to re-up Bryant, Flanders & Medlock during their privileged holiday period.
Guys like Thorpe don't come in every tin of caramel corn. The fact we sat on our collective duffs while this guy was in limbo is truly revolting!
We have no idea what's going on behind the scenes,who they are talking to,who they talked to,what their plans are,what the discussion is amongst the top 3.I think we need to relax a bit or the off season will drive you crazy.Nobody is sitting around doing nothing despite the claims by some.There is no tradition of this.On a poll of asst.coaches around the league Osh. was voted top coach of who they would coach with.We will get a good DC.Noel Thorpe? Meh.
Bombers will be pretty inactive til well after New Years. Club tends to let its senior management and coaching staff take extensive holidays - rather than using this critical time to scout NCAA, sniff out available coaches and test the waters for needed trades!
Pretty much standard operating procedure (SAP) for this organization since mid-90s. Don't see anything wrong with it either, most bomber fans are really happy with a team that can make playoffs next several years - although they don't have the horses to really mount a serious Grey Cup challenge!
.....Leos cleaning house....other clubs ditching their albatross's while we sit on our arse watching the wind blow....What the hell is wrong with this organization...Hall should have been given the pink slip after our second consecutive one and done, last game of the season...Maybe as one of our offseason moves we should try and convince Addison Richards to un-retire and come to camp along with Roc Carmichael ..At times we look so unbelievably lethargic and incompetent..Miller better light a fire under a couple of arses and get this bloody show on the road.
Time to put an end to the "what do you want to be when you grow up" deal that Miller and his boys have been fumbling for the past four years.
No one ever wanted a job the way Wade Miller wanted to be CEO of the Bombers and the politically correct board of governors went for it and actually hired him. Only problem he didn't have a clue what to do but he knew not to hire anyone who did know because he would be exposed. Why not hire your buddy who would never ever get such a gift job as general manager with no previous experience other than hanging around the Bomber office chasing cheerleaders and scouting Jake Thomas in college.
Can't screw up that dream scenario by hiring a coach who knows what he is doing so here comes the brother in law OShea who has somehow become acclaimed as a genius by his people. Please show me something he has accomplished in his time with the club.
None of the three have done anything other than cash fat pay cheques without reproach. It really has never been better in their lives. Wades life will be complete when he gets the statue which he has surely dreamed of and probably already planned out.
Meanwhile the breaks will even out on the field for the Bombers and they will surely finish last in the west next year. It is only the 2nd year of O Shea 's contract so he is safe and if they can put 3 wins together the extension papers can come out of the drawer where they are sitting.
For the fans we will get more bs as we overpay and anoint new stars time and again. It will be something that a regular fan won't understand so just go with O Shea and his story. Bomber issues start at the top and until the leadership of the team is addressed will continue to stand in the way of success for the program. Very simply the expectation is not what it needs to be.
Sucks to be a Bomber fan. IMO
Both O Shea and Walters played with the 1992 University of Guelph football club. If their wives are not sisters they were best friends. How can they be objective with 25 years of watching each others back like they like to do.
Would be ridiculous for someone to not think bias would come into any review of job performance.
They both need to go. University of Guelph would be a great place for them.
Bomber fans are the losers with this group. Starts with the board and Miller. Just saying.
Been watching since the mid 60's. Not going to fool me about the Bombers.
Not getting the free pass for the trioka while another coordinator is hung out to dry.
The 2017 record stands and looks good from a far but 5 miracle wins keeps it far from good imo.
Bombers have been a disaster since Miller was hired and will continue to be so until he is gone.
Unfortunately the board is a nice group of people who believe what they are told. The way $400,000 contracts are doled out a person would think the money tree is right there in south Winnipeg if you can get to it around the traffic. Early Monday is not too bad.
Please tell me the Bombers will challenge in 2018 based on some miracle. I see them last in the west despite the efforts of Andrew Harris. It is a shame that he had to come home to what he did.
Joe is making some extremely valid points. Like me, he comes from the old school - seen all the excuses and how the board of directors are basically a conglomeration of hi-paid businesspeople but who possess nothing more than coffee-fetch abilities.
Miller is an extremely intimidating individual so he can probably run this program for another 10 years - so long as the attendance holds firm 24,000 to 28,000 per game and he can pistol whip his underlings into selling tons of "winning" sales promotions.
His run will only come to an end if the team suffers two straight poor seasons (both at the gate and on the field)
Miller is still full of hubris. He knows he's got a get out of jail free card for one rotten season. If its next year he'll have to use it.
Meanwhile top football minds don't want to come to this market due to all the interference and bad reputation of the management - so bringing in professional agreers like Kyle Walters and Mike "Loyalty Rewards" O'Shea is the formula for continuation.
Obvioulsy, miller will try to utilize the 12-6 season (and coming within a brainfart of going to the western final) as his marketing drive. Frankly, I don't think the offense is that exciting (other than Harris) under the solid game manager Matt Nichols - and the defense is wildly atrocious with no prospects of improvement looming!
Slight decrease in season tix (1.25 to 2 percent) which is nothing in the scheme of things. Only iceberg Miller has to worry about is the bomber hedge fund depleting and the new Mallister govt. refusing to transfer more coin into the kitty. Slight decrease in seas. tix doesn't hurt thatmuch but if promotional monies decrease 10 or 15%, zero walk-ups then the forecast is for Miller to go on the beg down the road.
....Logistics and the 'money game' attached to the Bombers aside....the Freep has gone willy nilly today about not finding Ritchie Halls name, as well as Costello's (no not Lou) on the Bomber website today ...Speculation is that they may have been told their services are no longer required orrrrrrrrr it's just a website glich...Are we grasping at straws here or clinging to any suggestion at all, that we 'could' be parting ways with Hall...Maybe something in the wind or just wishful thinking...who knows....Article says also we could have our new DC right under our nose in O'Shea????...The wondering continues :
Your best linebacker goes down with a torn achilles and your starting middle linebacker for the past two years is sitting on a practice roster but he doesn't get a call because he snubbed the Bombers and signed elsewhere for more money last off season. That is classic head up your arse general managering but hang it on the coordinator who can't get what he needs from the rookie they give him to do it.
$20 beer and a hotdog will camouflage things for a bit but hard times lay ahead for this crew.
Three things not long hidden: The sun, the moon, and the truth.