Hi there CFL friends. I have created this thread because many of you are very knowledgeable about the CFL. Though I’ve been a fan for years I still have much to learn. I figure this would be a good way of getting questions answered without having to do a lot of research. Yes, most of our questions can be answered by googling the question but that takes a lot of time. Some may have the answer at their finger tips and could post it right here.
Not sure how this will play out but thanks Jon for steering me in this direction.
Question: If a CFL player tries to land a position in the NFL and does not succeed and wants to return to the CFL does the team he left have first dibs on him or can he go to any CFL team that is willing to pick him up?
I would argue that once cut from the NFL a ‘former’ CFL player is not under any contract at that point and is at liberty to sign with the team of his choosing. Even the Ladies Football League if he can change his gender in time to pass the physical.
A player who’s contract ended at that same time that the CFL season ended would be a FA the following year and not be forced to sign with his former CFL club after a failed NFL tryout. Nathan Rourke on the other hand signed a 3 year contract with the Lions in 2021 so he’d likely be going back to the Lions if he came back up here from the NFL this year.
Things would get a little trickier 4 or 5 years from now should Nathan Rourke return to the CFL after earning millions in the NFL. The CFL might have a hard time shoe-horning Rourke back into a contract that he was released from that wasn’t meant to extend past 2024.
Rourke wasn’t a rookie last season. Anyway… BC being the good sports that they are would likely do their best to keep Nathan Rourke happy and bend over backwards to accommodate him money-wise. Other teams up here would do the same. Randy Ambrosie would have to look the other way.
It’s my understanding that as long as his contract with BC has term left he remains BC property. Once it expires he would be a free agent. If he ever comes back to the CFL he should be a free agent by then.
That sounds reasonable to me. Last I heard Rourke made the Jaguar’s practice roster. Now you need to start a ‘Nathan Rourke Return to the CFL Pool’ thread to see who comes closest to guessing the year that he signs with the Atlantic Schooners.