All NFL teams are obligated to cut down their 90 man Training Camp rosters to a 53 man roster by 4pm on August 29th. There will then be a period where some of the weaker teams pick up players that were recently cut (thru a waiver process) and then finally teams go through a process of re-signing remaining players to their Practice Squads.
This entire process has to play itself out before any player will consider signing a CFL contract. I don’t recall the exact figures, but I believe an NFL Practice Squad player earns $750K (US) if they manage to stay with the team for a full season.
With that said, I just wanted to mention 3 players to keep an eye on:
PJ Walker, QB: This kid rose to prominence in the inaugural XFL season in 2020 (??). He was the starting QB for the Houston team coached by none other than June Jones.
He was far & away the best QB in that league, before the XFL season was cancelled due to COViD. However he managed to parlay that performance into a roster spot with the Carolina Panthers in 2020. But he has bounced around the NFL a bit since then. PJ Walker is an early casualty from the Chicago Bears training camp. Once upon a time, I recall that his name appeared on Ottawa’s Neg List; I have no idea which team might hold his CFL rights now, but if his NFL dream is coming to an end, perhaps the CFL is an option ??
Jordan Murray, OT: This immense kid only played a single season for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats helping to solidify the O-Line on that Tiger-Cat team that lost in the 2021 GC game (sorry to bring that up). After that game Jordan signed with the Indianapolis Colts, and remained with the team for the 2022 season (along with Nikola Kalinic).Jordan Murray is one of the early cuts from the Colt’s training camp. The 'Cats would certainly benefit if he decided to resume his football career north of the border.
and finally . . .
Nikola Kalinic, TE: As I have mentioned on many previous occasions, I wish him nothing but the best, but if things don’t work out for this beast down in the NFL, the fans of Hamilton would welcome him back to THF with open arms . . . Kalinic is no longer with the Indianapolis Colts, but rather is trying to win a roster spot with the LA Rams . . . no news yet about his status . . . stay tuned.
Regardless, by the time Labour Day rolls around, all CFL teams should have a few opportunities to improve their rosters with NFL castoffs. Let’s hope the 'Cats braintrust is actively working the phones.
PS: And what about that Canadian punter that Hamilton drafted out of UCLA . . . Molson ?? Is he still on the Green Bay Packers roster ??
There are two NFL practice squad salary scales. The first group is comprised of rookies and players with two or fewer accrued seasons … (who are) paid $12,000 a week … The second group is paid more than the first group, as these players often have a lot of NFL experience under their belts … $16,100 - $20,600 (per week, negotiable).
So rookies Group 1 is equivalent to $216K ($284,520 CAD) over the 18 weeks NFL season, and Group 2 is $289,800-370,800 ($381,720-488,420 CAD).
NOTE: Canadian value conversions based on RBC.com app, and will vary as exchange rates change.
Well our Offensive Coordinator, Scott Malanovich should have some good relations with Jordan & Kalinic as Scott was the QB coach in Indy last year.
If we can get those two guys our O would be shored up.
This is an indication that Jacksonville has no intent to carry 3 QB’s on their active 53 man roster.
The bad news for Nathan Rourke is that he has lost control of where this journey will take him . . . any of the 31 NFL teams can claim him.
The good news for Nathan Rourke is that if a team claims him, they are obligated to carry him on their 53 man roster. They would also have to expose Rourke to waivers before they could move him to their Practice Squad.
I am sure there is some anxiety in the Rourke household right now.
PS: any news on Kalinic in LA ?? And is JJ Molson a free agent?? He is probably being groomed for a position in the family business instead of practicing his punting skills.
What’s odd is that Doug Pederson apparently really wanted rourke. He’s a similar QB to Trevor Lawrence and Rourke felt he was going to a good situation. Now he’s not being kept as a 3rd string over CJ Bethard?
Over the next 4 hours NFL GM’s are attempting to trade some of the more talented assets that they will not have room for on their rosters . . . if they can get a 6th Round Draft pick for a functional player, that is better than just releasing a talented player & getting nothing in return.
But of course it takes two to tango . . .
But getting back to looking at this from a CFL standpoint, over 40 QB’s will be released today. More than half of those would be considered “training camp” arms . . . they probably do not even appear on a CFL Neg List. However there will be a few gems in there, like PJ Walker; not quite willing to give up on a professional football career.
I am certain that all 9 CFL teams are actively working the phones today. This is like “Boxing Day Week” for them !!! Players that they have been pursuing for years (in some cases) might finally become available !!
When the “Nathan Rourke hype” started to get a little out of control over that single TD toss, Pederson decided to weigh in, to temper expectations . . . throwing a little water on the fire in the process. Pederson made it clear there was no competition for the QB2 spot. CJ Beathard is a veteran QB that they continue to trust in an emergency situation.
I don’t think that Nathan Rourke has even faced a 1st Team NFL defence yet . . . & he has not faced sophisticated defensive coverages yet either - pretty vanilla during Pre-season. But he did take advantage of his opportunities to put his athleticism on display.
And I would think Rourke compares better to the NFL version of Doug Flutie as opposed to Trevor Lawrence. Lawrence is becoming an elite NFL QB.