The Canadian draft represented a new beginning for CFL fans who have long awaited this year's edition. The viewing of the draft via computers was very successful. Hats off to Duane Forde for his excellent presentation and his great preceding columns with his analysis of the strengths and rankings of the university candidates for the CFL.
I was suprised by Popp's focus on linemen as I was expecting The Als would draft any wide receiver they could possibly get their hands on. In retrospect there are problems on the line as the Als lost Adriano Belli and Ed Philion and, last year's offensive line was beginning to show its age. Lets just hope we will have a healthy Richard Yalonsky as a starter at tackle, as he has a history of knee injuries, and Jeff Perrett drafted last year will add some needed youth to the offensive line.
I was very happy that The Als have signed Yves Beriault as he has great speed and was a star in CIS Quebec. He reminds me of a local guy out of Baron Bing High School in Montreal who showed up unannounced at THe Als camp in the sixties. He , like Beriault, was on the small side but was fast and in training camp he demonstrated he could catch- Terry Evanshen. Terry had a long life in the CFL and was a presence in the 1970 team , coached by Sam Etcheverry, who won the Grey Cup in that year. Beriault might be a long shot but he has demonstrated quickness and he could compete for a kick returning job and possibly as a receiver.
So change is in the air in Montreal and one might expect that Popp's focus on the line will have a good payout.I was hoping that Jesse Palmer might also add youth to the team and develop into a solid Canadian QB. I would guess, however, we will see him in an Ottawa uniform in 2008.