Kicker and punter search

Who is being brought in for a look for the kicking duties?

The only two names i have heard that are confirmed to have worked out are Delbert Alvarado and Brett Maher getting another look.

You have to think they'll be looking at guys like John Mark (Saskatchewan), Zachary Medieros (Edmonton) and Steven Shott (B.C.) who have been released

Meanwhile, the Eskimos also cut Hugh O'Neill, and while he's listed only as a punter, the RedBlacks don't have one of those, either.

Hugh O’Neil has not been released by the Eskimos but transferred to 1 game injured list to July 3,2014.


With the new age limits for the OFC Junior Mediros, Mark, Schott, are all eligible to play in the OFC. Could it be possible for Ottawa to have a young kicker on board as a territiroal excemption and have them practice with the REDBLACKS While getting game action on the weekends with the Sooners.

Brett Maher is once again the kicker and now Punter for the REDBLACKS. Forget everyone else for now..

[b]Brett Maher getting another kick with Redblacks[/b]

Published on: June 26, 2014Last Updated: June 26, 2014 3:50 PM EDT
Brett Maher tests out his kicking leg during practice Thursday.

Jean Levac / Ottawa Citizen

Oh baby, what a couple of weeks for Brett Maher.

The 24-year-old kicker played impressively for Winnipeg in Canadian Football League pre-season games on June 9 and 14, but was released on June 16 because of the number of “national? and “international? players on the Blue Bombers’ roster.

On June 17, he flew into Ottawa, signed with the Redblacks, and had one full practice and a short “run-through? before handling field goals and kickoffs against the Montreal Alouettes on June 20.

That performance wasn’t up to anybody’s expectations, and the Redblacks made Maher one of 15 roster cuts last Saturday. He was asked to stick around and won a five-kicker tryout on Tuesday and Wednesday before returning to the practice field at Carleton University with the rest of the team on Thursday.

Somewhere in the middle, Maher squeezed in two days at home in Nebraska with his wife, Jenna, and daughter, Maela, who arrived prematurely on June 13. Maher received a phone call from his wife at 5:45 a.m., and was able to see his little girl in the hospital delivery room via Skype two hours later.

“They’ll be joining me here. I’m trying to find a place and get everything situated, and then as soon as she’s ready,? said the former University of Nebraska Cornhusker, adding that he had photos of Maela on his smartphone, tablet and anywhere else he could post them. “She was 4 1/2 weeks early. She ended up having to stay in the hospital for a while, but she’s doing pretty well now. She got home three days ago.?

As things turned out, Maher’s first CFL regular-season game will be back in Winnipeg, where the Redblacks kick off their inaugural season on July 3, and he’ll be expected to handle not only kickoffs and field goals, but also punts, which were the responsibility of Canadian Justin Palardy in pre-season.

Palardy’s performance was found wanting, though, and American Paulo Henriques never got a chance to kick in the preseason because of a leg injury. Both were released as the Redblacks got down to the CFL regular-season roster limit last Saturday, but so was Maher, who against the Als had five kickoffs averaging just 55 yards and was penalized for bouncing one out of bounds. He connected on a 21-yard field goal, but also missed from 40.

That led to this week’s tryouts, where Maher was judged the best of a group that also included former Hamilton Tiger-Cat Luca Congi, former Alouette hopeful Delbert Alvarado and two other U.S. kickers.

“We always from the get-go were going to make the commitment to our kicking game that, regardless of Canadian or American, we were going to use the best, whether it was one or two (players), or Canadian or American,? Redblacks head coach Rick Campbell said. “The other thing is the (active) roster has gone to 44, and there’s four designated imports, so it was becoming more and more tolerable to people in general to be open about where you’re using your specialists.?

Maher said he hadn’t been bothered by having to go through this week’s tryout, and he didn’t believe there was any additional pressure resulting from the manner in which the Redblacks’ kicking situation was settled. He said he had handled all three kicking roles for two seasons with the University of Nebraska Cornhuskers.

“I will tell you that don’t think anyone can put more pressure or have higher expectations for me than myself,? he said Thursday. “As long as I go out there and do what I need to do every single day, get myself better every day and make sure that I’m mentally and physically prepared for every week, I think I’ll like the results.?

Part of the strategy behind releasing Maher, but having him stick around for the post-training camp audition, involved the kind of roster shuffling that all CFL teams engage in at the start of the season. The Redblacks had to meet the same roster deadline as the eight other teams even though they have a bye in the opening week of the schedule.

Maher said the days off between his release and the return to practice had helped him to “get grounded and back to where I needed to be, more from a mental standpoint than anything. I feel like I’m in good shape now.?

Also Thursday, GM Marcel Desjardins said wide receiver Carlton Mitchell was headed for the one-game injured list, which means he won’t be available for duty at Winnipeg.

Still with Maher they are going to need some back ups and/or a second to handle punting duties. At the least keeping some young Nationals around town.

Brett Cameron is a punting specialist could be a good National to have on the PR. What is interesting about Cameron is that he is just 24 and could conceivably play Junior football in the OFC. He is 0 for two with Western teams the last two training camps. Coming east Hamilton has the Hurricanes in their back yard, Toronto has two teams in the GTA and Ottawa has the Sooners. Junior Camps start in July maybe some live action, fresh film and a territorial excemption could be a different possibility.

Mederios A draft pick from the London Beef eaters also still available. Nick Boyd sits on the Montreal PR right now both are punters as well as place kickers.

Johnny Mark was the top kicker in the draft and Ottawa showed interest pre draft also was released by the Riders but still has a year of CIS left in Calgary. He is only 22 and also has a year left of Junior football in the PFC Should the Riders be interested could look to hook him up with the Rams or Toppers even.

The article says that he is also their punter.

The problem with keeping players around town is that it costs money. The REDBLACKS aren't stupid. They're didn't fly in 4 other kickers just to go through this same process all over again.

They're also not going to dip into their operating budget just to keep a few players around town that won't pan out.

Local junior players also have lives outside of football that they won't want to disrupt just to "practice" with a team. Also local junior kickers play their games on weekends and practice with their teams during the week so it isn't convenient either....

I'm really sure Marcel Desjardins is filing through this thread and going "WOW! How stupid were we? We flew in 4 other kickers for auditioning when all we had to do was call CFLSteve and he'd give us the scoop on who's still available out there"

And most of us still call them Canadian or Non-Import. This National / International thing isn't flying .

Well anyway you look at it they are going to need a back up kicker on the roster at least the practice roster. As for Junior players the BC lions often have players practice with them and then play on the weekends for their Junior team.
Andrew Harris was actually on the Lions PR at one time and traveld every weekend to play for the VI Raiders. They currently have an Olineman who is doing the same as a territiroal excemption. SOit does happen for players who has realistic ambitions to play in the CFL oppsed to going to University.
Junior players can actually get paid to be on the pregular practice roster as well and play weekends.

Two candidates who may take a PR spot and kick on weekedns would be Mark who has been with the Dino's for 4 seasons and is from Ottawa.
Brett Cameron another who has pro ambitions but may need a team toplay on for live action has the support of his father Bob Cameron

Ack Evans now with Ottawa went that route with the Riders and Thunder.
The new rule may add some new twists

Maher will handle punts too

"I feel I'm ready to go," he said. "I feel I can go out there and compete at a high level. I expect to make every kick, and I expect to hit every punt and kick off very, very well."

Who says they need a backup kicker? Did Desjardins tell you something he didn't tell the rest of us? I don't think you understood what was said earlier. Maher and 4 others audtioned, Maher won. Let's move on to the next thread.

And who is Ack Evans and what does he have to do with a kicker and punter search?

Well I guess you do not need a second kicker on the Practice roster at the very least in case your starting kicker gets hurt.
If Maher should get hurt and be out for a game or more you are right they can just go back to the available Kickers and bring a few in for a tryout until Maher is healthy.