Off Season Report

Team by team off season recap. Reverse order of 2017 finish. Know your enemy. Viewed from a Bomber fan perspective. All opinions expressed are subject to change in a heartbeat if convenient.

Toronto Argonauts:
Maybe not as wonderful as they looked last November. Lots of contract chaos. Butler and Wilder were big parts of 2017 but seems typical of Jim Popp to court contract controversy. Complete new secondary. Same Trestman. Unlikely to repeat as champions in 2018 but who knows.

Calgary Stampeders:
More active than usual. Adding good pieces and getting younger. One of the few teams developing players with no reason to expect them not to fill the remaining holes. Quarterback depth behind Bo Levi would be my concern

Edmonton Eskimos:
Solid at QB, over loaded at RB, blessed at receiver, not sold on kicking. Big loss appears to be Joel Figueroa with no replacement to date. Possibly not as good as previously thought.

Sadskatchewan Roughriders:
Full marks for entertainment value. Ringling Bros had nothing on these guys. People coming and going, Got great receivers and sign more receivers, and running backs. Bond for Dennis is solid. Going Collaros with KG would have been less risky than going with Bridge as #2 imo. Rider fans know everything. Call this one unfullfilled potential and out of the playoffs. Saskatchewan gets no rain.

Winnipeg Blue Bombers:
Very positive Bomber buzz in the air. Loaded on offense. Better depth. Andrew Harris is the leader.
Definitely buying opposed to building. Nice to see the local boys coming home. Expecting the Bombers to be a factor. Western conference finalist and watch out. Can MOS avoid out tricking himself.

Ottawa Red Blacks:
Added some talent with Purifoy, Leonard, and Murray but lost as well with Evans. Thorpe bringing Kyries over must say something. Offence does not inspire at this point. Trevor Harris staying healthy would be a good thing for Red Black fans. Possibly play well enough to finish third and take the crossover away but one and done from there I fear. Franchise folds again.

BC Lions:
Energizer bunny has nothing on Ed Hervey. Liked him signing Manny on his first day of work. Dire QB situation. Cody Fajardo will be a good short yardage guy with potential but if he is starting then Lions are in tough. Another Lulay comeback please and they might have something. Jon Jennings playing the young and athletic co star. I do not see Wally going out on top. Lions miss.

Impressed by Kent Austin keeping his cool, signing his guys. Brandon Banks was big in the second half and the offence should be good. Defence is solid. Distractions traded away. Good adds in Lirim and Vernon Adams. Would say ahead of TO for top spot in the east and a Grey Cup appearance although Hamilton has never struck me as a good cold weather team.

Kavis doing what he can. Hope Mike Sherman does well. Could be a wild card if they can get it together but an unsettled QB situation prevents too much optimism at this time imo.

As good a pre-season review as I've seen in the last 10 years on any board. Good stuff Joe Football. . . .

My only adds - the bombers are still kryptonited on their d-line. Westerman wasn't my favourite guy - but he was canuck and usually held most olinemen to standoffs in rushing situations - wasn't much of a pass rush as I thought, very undisciplined on QB contact and off-sides (trying to cheat the count). Muamba would only be a salve for a porous d-line - he'd be making backup tackles ---- still OK, cuz instead of guys running over Hurl and going 10 yds when they should be held for 4, Muamba can hold for 4 (or somesuch) - - - - far less post-contact yards than Hurl yielded . . . .

......Don't forget Lyle, that Wild was out a good portion of the year....Nobody was afraid to run against Sam 'in chase mode' Hurl.....I agree Westy took too many off sides anticipating the count BUT when he did make a play it was usually of the very good variety....We've moved on from Heath but have replaced him nicely with Fenner...No excuses for Hall to not have a better year with that talent....MLB the only missing piece right now on D...The way I sees it

....Have to agree with joe's synopsis....maybe a few things I see differently....Esks. are going to miss Bowman and that weakens their receiving corps....They have some good talent but I'm going to suggest we are every bit as good as they're going to field...They only beat us out if Zylstra returns to the igloo...

...Otherwise in the west it's going to be a dog fight...I think that the Leos' will be hurting big time with the losses they've suffered in fa...Sask. and them will be fighting for the booby prize....and by that I don't mean anything but last place in the west ...not anything to do with the cheer leaders...

Good points guys and easy to be an expert in Feb. Sure to be a few twists and turns before it is done.

Looking around it occurred to me that signing Durant not only gave the Bombers a strong #2 but also took away from him helping another team against them in the standings.

Agree that it will be a tough go in the west but think the Bombers are as good as they have been for a long time. Won't say the favorite but definitely a contender. Staying healthy will help.

This is going to be an exciting season.

It sure is and I'm looking forward to it. Lots of good Canadians on the team. Muamba would be icing on the cake. Can't say Walters isn't trying to address every need.

Muamba and his team seem going to be a top contender.

Teams that did well this off season:


Teams that did not get worse:


Teams that need the season to start and hope that off field distractions do not derail the hopes and dreams of older men who follow the CFL:


Will save a prediction thread for another day. Hope for some news in the meantime.

....Just a few of my observations joe
Edmonton.....definitely going to miss Franklin as a back-up...much the same position as us at qb. proven guy if the no 1 can't go

Sask........Going with a guy like Collaros is a gamble....They could be in bad shape if they have to go with Bridge..No matter what you hear in sask. Bridge is not a Riley or a Nichols...

Calgary and Winnipeg are definitely teams to beat

B.C. and Mont. had to get better

I see little change in T.O. , Ham. or Ottawa....much the same as last year except that the Argo's have definitely improved in the qb, back-up dept. if Ray succumbs

Haven't really heard many outside of some blowhards say otherwise about Bridge. Does he have some very promising potential...sure. Will he get there...who knows. He developed a pile from 2016 through 2017 and by all accounts from mini (which doesn't mean a lot) he focused on a lot of the right things in the off-season. He has a few aspects of his game that drive me nuts, but he has the accuracy I think and he has great athletics. ZC is a risk for sure...he has shown he can play at an MVP level in the past...if that returns then good things can happen. If not, I think Bridge at least keeps them competitive.

BC and Montreal got better...I would say Montreal should be the most improved team unless they bust at QB. That said...they had a lot of room to improve so...

I think Edmonton may take a dip here, time will tell. Not too worried about their O, but their DL is basically new. Guess it is a matter if the found some good players for that, but it has to be a big concern. The DL is a spot that can look good fast if the right bodies are in there...they can get on the same page pretty quickly.

I think the concern for the Bombers is whether or not they have to play Neufeld...Bond was the best OLman in the league last season...or at least hands down the best OG...that is a significant loss and sorry, PN is just not good enough as a regular starter. Hoping one of the young guys shows well for them and can win it out...they do have some promising depth there.

Agree that Collaros is an unknown at this point. Bridge had his moments in 2017 and maybe more upside to come but unlikely to get the reps that he needs to take it to the next level this year barring an injury to ZC. Can't see him being traded and not that other teams won't ask but could see him looking for a better situation in free agency after his contract is up.

James Franklin might be the first quarterback to make the Hall of Fame without ever taking a snap. Hopefully Trestman gets him into some games and we can bear witness. Agree he looks like a good one but he needs to play and learn the game. Toronto has the benefit of not having to win every game to make the playoffs. 9 - 9, 10 - 8 and they are in.

Edmonton made the play of the off season signing KG imo. Please don't tell me he has lost his reputation of best backup in the league. He knows the game and is a good team guy. Maas will love his quarterback situation.

Agree Calgary warrants a top ranking but it seems chaos is always only a heartbeat away in Cowtown. Finch will be missed. Bo Levi misses time and Calgary misses the playoffs. Will be tough to win 15 again but Hufnagel's record says never count him out.

Change in Hamilton came last year and they built on it in the off season. They will be unlikely to go 0 - 8 to start. Not sold on Masoli but June Jones isn't worried about what I think.

Strap the helmet on playing BC. They are going to be tough. Ed Hervey was a very good hire. Wally says he is going to open it up. I see them in the top 3. Assuming Jennings will be the guy but Fajardo might be the future. Having Lulay close by helps both of the others.

Montreal can not be worse and have made some decent additions.Was not a Drew Willy guy during his Bomber days but he may have a good situation with the Als. Maybe Freeman turns into the next Sonny Wade and starts collecting Grey Cup rings. A strong franchise in Montreal is good for the league.

I am seeing Ottawa and Winnipeg razor thin depth wise at qb. Harris goes down and the RedBlacks are done. Probably opens up the crossover spot for the west.

I'll let the Bombers play and see how they do but not expecting much. Troika has them in a world of trouble imo. Gig would be up in a less tolerant environment.

.....I have to tell you joe that Edm. better hope that Riley doesn't see any shelf time because if they have to go with Glenn????big drop off...Of course you could say the same with us orrrr any other club missing their no 1....(maybe not the argos's) BUT I think Glenn has been behind centre too long well their offensive line is nothing to write home about.. Father time is going to catch up sometime and like Durant (who most likely seen the writing) will hang em up...Riley has a penchant for running head long into the opposition's heavies ...he might want to reconsider that this year considering what he has backing him up, at this juncture in time...Just my take

I will need to respectfully ask that we agree to disagree about KG papa. Absolutely no offence intended and everyone is welcome to their own opinions. I won't mention him again unless it is related to on field activities which may never happen.

That said I would be surprised to be the only Bomber fan that wishes we had worked something out with him and still had him on the roster. In that situation the Bombers would have the best qb situation in the league imo.

Getting closer everyday. We shall soon see how it shakes out. Go Bombers Go!

.....With rookie camp underway and the tc main around the corner, it'll be interesting to see who jumps off the page...I hope to hear that something exciting and positive is going on with the mlb spot, db and receiver spots...We certainly have brought in enough talent this whether or not some of these players pan out is a whole 'nother story..Back-up qb. is also of great interest and after day 1 I'm hearing that it's going to be a real battle between Ross and Streveler for the position..Both have shown a lot of can they turn it into something

.....Good article by Tate about Augustine....Many feel he could make the club as a special teamer and another guy who impressed was Presley ...(I don't think he's a relative of Elvis)...Powerful runner who can bring back punts with authority...Could be his ticket in....Main camp open today....that would indicate the offseason is officially done...been awhile