With little football news coming out of the CFL these days one might stir some interest by looking in the past for ratings of how successful-unsucessful the Als were in recent drafts. To do this I have chosen to evaluate past drafts to specifically examine the players selected who quickly turned into starter positions with the Als.
The year 2000 was not a good draft for the Als. However, I would rate the 01 draft as the best in this period. Luke Fritz and Pat Woodcock quickly became first string players for the Als. Woodcock excelled at wide receiver although he was too quickly signed by the new Ottawa football club.The Als made a great mistake last year by not again making him as a selection in the Ottawa draft. Woodcook would have been a presence in last years club which had a deficit at the wide receiver position.
At second place I would rate the 03 draft. The first Als selection was a huge receiver with a great reputation coming out of an eastern university. However, in training camp the Als discovered he could not catch the ball. However Kari Kari and Paul Archer were great additions to the team and in the sixth round the Als discovered the gem of that round- Dave Stala who quickly moved into a first string position.The Als also selected Matt Bertrand but barely gave him a look and he wound up playing first string with Edmonton as a blocking fullback.
In third place I would rate the 06 draft with O'Neil Wilson quickly securing a first string position. For some reason Wilson disappeared from the first string team until last season when he recaptured that position. Alan Kashma was selected but went to the NFL. We will have to evaluate his playing status this year.
At number four is the 06 draft. Etienne Boulay was a presence at special teams last year while, as the season progressed, looked good in the defensive backfield. In college, Boulay excelled at corner and we can can consider him a first string player this year.Also, Eric Deslaurier should be a prime candidate for a first string reciver position this year.
In 05 the Als did not obtain a first string player but Matt Proulx and Jeff Piercy are still with the club. The 02 draft was the poorest in this review with Aaron Fianconni eventually ending up in Winnipeg.
Not mentioned in this review were several draftees who made significant contributions to special teams. Lets hope that Popp will uncover some jems in may.