Marquee Player Rule

Saw it mentioned on twitter earlier, and got me thinking. Should the CFL consider re-instituting a marquee player rule where one "star player" is paid big bucks that don't go against the cap. I know the CFL had something like this going back in the day and they got rid of it because of all the "under the table deals"
However the MLS has this exact rule to help grow the identity of their game. Not an exact comparison I know because of MLS ownership structure is WAY different than CFL (wherein MLS owners are considered investors)
However I think it might be something to look at as a way to grow the interest in the league.

Just think - Cam Newton is brought up north to QB. That would definitely draw interest.

So vote on what you think.

Just raise the salary cap!

Raising the salary cap just means more money for starting QBs and canadian linemen.

My thoughts on the topic from a threat a year ago:


Thats an interesting point DG.

Looking at estimated salaries its amazing how many players are at or near the minimum. QB and (so far) Canadian O-Line are benefited. When you see guys like Jeff Perret earning $200,000 it makes you wonder.
The last CBA was ironed out by a plethora of cflpa Canadian o-lineman.

The only way out of this discrepancy is to raise the minimum and cap the max salary perhaps, along with a higher cap overall.

These seem like much better ideas to me.

The CFL's profile is already pretty high in most of the country, so I don't think adding a marquee player is going to help much there, especially beyond the first year or two. We'd still be the 2nd-highest gridiron football league in the world, but we'd be paying a lot more for players.

A marque player rule would really help market the game in the larger markets (Vancouver & especially Toronto) but I'm not sure it would do much in Regina.

Seems to work for MLS and judging by the explosion of media coverage of the Johnny Manziel/Riders commotion yesterday, maybe its not such a bad idea

Pretty expensive tho, look at when Argos paid Rocket Ismail $4 mill - sure they won the GC but its hard to sustain paying someone that amount.

I think the only player the marquee rule really brought to the league was Ismael, who was (or was projected to be) the #1 overall NFL pick. That did indeed bring some splash and hype, but it was short-lived and probably not worth the expense.

If the CFL were like the 10th highest league and were trying to compete with multiple leagues above it for talent and legitimacy, then it might make sense. But that's not the case. Better to use the cash to build the brand so that the investment doesn't disappear when the player retires, gets injured, moves back to the NFL, etc.

Player association and owner would be better off capping the max salary IMO. Somewhere between 350 and 400k

Salary cap of ~50% of gross revenues and max salary of 10% of salary cap would make more sense IMO.

IMO the issue isn’t “marquee value” it is retaining fan investment in players. How about going Back tot he Future and reinstating the rule that Internationals could count as National after so many years (e.g., 7) in the league or some set time with the same team (e.g., last 5).

Keeping “fan favourites” with the same team would do more than big spenders adding a “name”.

There's always the pros and cons on this subject. Saskatchewan could probably afford a marque player more than anyone now. But name players do create interest and excitement, especially to the casual fan.
Just wondering if it would be worth TSN's TV numbers if they supplied each club with another 500,000 towards a marque player. Otherwise some teams would be at a disadvantage. The NFL probably wouldn't like it if they were to lose a few name players. I would say too bad.

Why does the marquee player have to be an NFL player and not just a team locking down their own marquee guy?

Andrew Harris would get marquee / franchise player contract from my earlier scenario.

Ellingson in Ottawa, and that would have freed up cap space for Ottawa to re-sign Ernest Jackson and Kanneh.

Less roster turnover amongst the most recognizable players on a team. More money for players without the new money going to the QB or canadian linemen.

After reading d_g's post I'm warming up more to the idea of keeping your own around longer and using the marquee as a means to do it.

Perhaps the marquee guy has to be on the roster for a period of time , say 3 years, before getting that designation. And maxing out the marquee salary at say $500,000, to be paid for by non capped money, which would cause teams to be more mindful of overspending on deadwood coaches etc..

Maybe it could work if it is capped at $500,000 or whatever everyone else might afford

Well given how much teams are spending in dead money with fired coaches and GMs etc I think all teams can "afford" $500,000 for an existing player to move into marquee territory. What I wouldn't want to happen is for a player to be airlifted in to be the marquee guy. Has to be an existing player of some tenure. I say 4 years.

personally I would not have a marquee player rule, I would increase the salary cap to $6 million per team, and break the team into 6 groups with its own salary cap ,
1 = QBs,
2 = specialty players ( kickers ) long snapper debatable ?
3 = O - line,
4 = D - line,
5 = receivers and running backs
6 = defensive backs, linebackers and safety

increase Canadian ratio from 7 starters to 10, and roster size by 2.
players who play more than 5 seasons with the same team, ( not 5 years in league ) they then can be considered naturalised Canadian .
maximum of 3 naturalised Canadians per roster.

Roster Breakdown
Nationals - Min. 23 ( including 3 naturalised Canadians )
Internationals - Max. 20
Quarterbacks - 3
Reserve - 2
Total - 48
Each team may dress a 46-man active roster consisting of:
3 QBs (no designation)
Maximum of 20 international players (4 of which must be identifed as designated internationals)
Minimum of 23 national players
Each team must start 10 national players ( 3 of which may be naturalised Canadians )

I like the naturalised Canadians aspect...though think that part of that should include obtaining actual citizenship

I like that idea better myself, didn't we used to have a rule like that years ago , for Lancaster and reed ?? Can't remember