Some common sense at last

http://www.tsn.ca/cfl/story/?id=409417

Thank GOD .... the option year so that they could explore the NFL was a throw back to years ago when the CFL was in dire straits and needed the help of the NFL.

That is no longer the case and it hurts team unity and growing the fan base when every year the cream of the crop is gone 1/2 a year or more to test the NFL waters. Option year contracts need to end.

I think you're reading it wrong.

According to the Vancouver Province, members of the CFL's competition committee have had discussions on allowing teams to sign players to option years and opening a window for them to test the waters in the NFL, if they so desired.
The one year plus an option doesn't exist right now, guys like Ellominian had the last of those contracts. In the current CBA its two years minimum. This article is about changing it back:
"Not allowing players to work out for NFL teams will make the free agent market less predictable and inevitably encourage player movement," agent Dan Vert-lieb told the Province. "Essentially, reverting the (option-year) rule back to its previous form would decrease player movement, give CFL clubs greater cost certainty and encourage roster continuity."
This has been talked about on and off all year. They changed it because they didn't like players leaving for the NFL after one year, but now they're finding that a lot of players are reluctant to come to the CFL in the first place if they're locked in for two years. In truth very few players took advantage of the option year and fewer still actually stuck in the NFL, but a lot of players want the ability to do so. Taking it away has just reduced the pool of players that are willing to sign.

Right Tridus. This would be a return to the prior system where players could sign in the NFL in the option year window.

I can see the argument GMs will probably be making - some players might be reluctant to sign in the CFL if they have to play out 2 years (the one year and the option year) before they can test NFL waters, this limits the pool and maybe some quality of player the CFL teams can get. Having that option year window closed makes it harder to compete with the likes of the UFL which, despite next to nobody watching it or paying to watch it rather, allows players to leave for NFL opportunities even in season.

As a fan though, it sucks seeing top talent taking off after one good year and having to refill the spot again the next year. Also you'd think this would impact the teams ability to sell some merchandise. Why would u shell out big bucks on a jersey with name and number of a guy when he could easily take off after one season? Plus its harder to sell those CFL season tickets if you lose your dynamic rookie every offseason to be NFL TCF.

I wonder if creating a transfer window like you see in soccer might be the answer. Players can move between leagues and teams based on a transfer fee. So lets pick, say Chris Williams with the Ticats. Right now he's obligated to come back to the TiCats and play out his option year. Under the old system he could sign with any NFL team and head to their training camp. If he gets cut and doesn't get another spot elsewhere in the NFL in 10 days he has to come back to the TiCats, which is not till September typically. Why not require teams who want a CFL player pay up an inter-league transfer fee, $10, 15, or 20L? If they really want him, the CFL and the team that lost him should get something back for the inconvenience and potential lost revenue from losing an upper level talent. It may cut into any bonus the player may get from the NFL team but so what? If they make it they get a higher NFL salary. If an NFL team is really sold on a player and they want him they they should be willing to pay it. If a player has a good year but the NFL squads are not so sure, they'll wait another year to get him when his option year is over and the CFL keeps him for his second year. This will limit how many guys will jump early but still make it enticing to players. Opening that window to allow players to keep walking after one season in exchange for nothing isn't worth it.

No question, open it up and give the players as much freedom as possible and encourage as many players from the US to come here if they don't think they will get an NFL shot or don't get drafted and will just be meat fodder in training camps. :thup:

People need to remember that all football players want to play in the NFL in NA, for the money, so would I in a sport where the average career is the shortest of them all. The key is to pick from the largest pool possible for all teams here knowing few will make it in the NFL anyways due to their size for the position in the conservative NFL way they evaluate players.

The argument they're making is that it's already happening, since that's the system we're using now. GMs have been complaining about it all year and Dave Naylor reports on it occasionally.

While it sucks when a guy leaves, IMO it's just not as bad as 10 guys never coming in the first place. The number of players that actually got to use the option is pretty low, and the number that don't come back is really low. The number of guys with NFL asparations is comparatively quite high.

It's a pretty compelling sales pitch for the CFL teams when they can say "come showcase your stuff for one year. If an NFL team shows interest then you can go. If not, you've got a job for a second year and potentially a career." With the second year, the UFL becomes more tempting and I'm not sure if we'd see guys like Cam Wake come up here at all.

Is it better to have him for a year and have other guys permanently, or not have them at all in order to try and have them for two years? IMO, the old system worked pretty well.

While it sucks when a guy leaves, IMO it's just not as bad as 10 guys never coming in the first place.

Well said Tridus. :thup:

Win and all is forgotten.

No thank you and the current system for a two-year minimum is fine with me!

Please do NOT change back so that we can only see folks one and done especially when they are new stars.

:thdn: :thdn: :thdn:

Also as there are heavy upfront training costs for each player for each team, so it is only after two years that the chance of a return on the investment per player is greater than with only one year certain.

No way should the CFL be a revolving door for the NFL after only one season. :thdn: :thdn: :thdn:

If they don't want to play in the CFL, well the UFL sucks for you if they can't make the practice roster in the NFL or just want hang around the local gym as is not necessarily the worst option for an individual player if he has more going on in life beyond football at any given time.

Paolo is 100% correct.

Tell players who cant commit to the CFL for two years to take a hike. The fact is they have no leverage. Either play in the CFL or go get a real job (I guess they could try the UFL before it folds like a cheap tent or arena ball). I doubt the CFL is missing out on any talent. We need less turnover in this league not more.

Plus players benefit by playing multiple years in the CFL before going to the NFL. There's a reason why CFL players are in the CFL and not the NFL (size, speed, luck or lacktherof, what have you). Can anyone name me a guy who went to the NFL after one season in the CFL and stuck? Besides Stefan Logan I can't think of any. Cam Wake, Brandon Browner, Garrett MacIntyre, John Chick, Andrew Hawkins, etc all spent more than a season here honing their skills.

Some of this has to do with the new situation that developed after this years CFL Draft where players such as Fredirick Plesius and Kirby Fabian returned to the CIS in hopes of getting a better offer from the NFL next season. Under the current rules they would be locked into at least two seasons in the CFL i think a two year deal with the second being an option year i think is the Minimum. Wally Buano got Burnt heavily when Fabian did not at last come to camp with BC and decided just to go back to the CIS.
If the rule was to revert back to the option year Plesius and Fabian could have played in the CFL this season. Entertained offers from the NFL after the season went to workouts and Mini Camps etc. and if they got an invite to an NFL camp they could take it if not they could be in CFL camp on time.
The CFL has began to target experienced NFL free agents who have already been in the NFL for 3-5 years. SOme were key members of the teams they played for until their rookie contracts expired and began the NFL bounce around. Watkins, Burnett, Simpson, Sheets, to name a few and others who have been on the frindge and have exhausted all of thier Practice roster eligibility. Xavier Fulton being an example.

CFLSteve those are some great points but my view below and the status quo stand.

Those guys choosing to remain in CIS can try their luck all they want with the NFL next year anyway.

Very very few make it for much in the NFL straight out of CIS. Kory Greenwood is the last and only such name to come to mind. He’s on a terrible team, the Chiefs, who otherwise have a good front seven.

I certainly agree 100% some will be able to get onto a practice roster most return to the CFL.
The point being that all of the guys who turned down even to go to Training camp to try to imrove there game enough to get an invite to a TC. If they did not get a invite this season going back to the CIS would not help them to improve their game especaily if they did not even fo to the CFL camp of the team who drafted them. Someone is giving them bad advise. By allowing them to sign a 2yr deal out of the CIS with the second an option year they could have played in the CFL this season been able to attend rookie camps again and if they did not get invited they could return to the CFL before TC begins.
At least they will have one season in the CFL get all the rookie bonuses and pay and still go to rookie camps to attempt to get a TC invite or just get an invite due to their playin the CFL.

They can't do that anymore. There is no longer a one year + option year contract. They'd have to stay for two years, and if they want to take a shot at the NFL next year playing in the CFL this year isn't an option.

That's the whole problem, and why the GMs now want to change the rule back.

The CFL could go all the way and allow NFL teams to sign players off CFL rosters during the season. The CFL could probably attract even better athletes, once they know they could be called up to the big leagues at any time (like David Allen who left the Stamps in mid-season a couple years ago, to play in the NFL). Could you imagine the honour and prestige of little 'ole CFL'ers getting a chance to play in the biggest, baddest and most successful sports league in the history of the world? Sure the CFL teams might suffer a bit in their playoff hunt, but fans will understand that the NFL is King and the CFL is just a feeder league, or farm league to the vaunted NFL and players deserve the right to play for the best. CFL fans could still follow the development of their star players in the National Football League, knowing "we knew him way back when". And lets face facts, every CFL player would jump at the chance to be in the NFL, even if he had to shine their shoes or wash their laundry (which is commonplace in English football, for example.) Let's not forget than 52,000 fans in Toronto pay an average of $150 to watch every Bills game (and would gladly pay even more) but the Argos have trouble attracting family and friends. :expressionless:

I realize that. My point is that they are talking about reverting back to the option year because of the players like Plesius and Fabian that turned down CFL offers returning to the CIS as not having to weight for two seasons to if the NFL is interested. My feeling is that someone is giving them bad advice. For example I cant see how Plesius will get any better by not attending Hamilton's training camp last year at the very least. I can't see how skipping training camp not to mention a pro season in the CFL and just returning to the CIS will give him a better shot. Now plying to years in the CFL would give him a chance to imrove and have game film to prove it.
Most likely after these guys do not get past an NFL mini rookie camp that most players will see the merits of playing in the CFL if they were not viewed by the NFL as good enough right out of the CIS. Wall Buaono gotburnt big time by Fabian and his agent as they apparently went back on their word. IF a top guy like Buono was not contenplating this change then it would not even be an issue

Jabber all you want some of you, as the status quo will not change at least for another season and hopefully not at all.

Player development and roster continuity matter more than short-term financial aspirations that seldom work out in the NFL anyway.

Either commit to 2 years with a CFL team or say goodbye to your football career.
That simple.