Steinberg's MMQB: Key off-season departures and replacements

Trying to remember all the big-name players who have changed teams this off-season can be a difficult task. It really has been that busy over the last two months. With free agency winding down and our focus turning to the coming season, this week’s column focuses on some of the most interesting departures we’ve seen this winter.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

Every year Teams lose big players because the CFL has such a small CAP. So every organization has to be prepared to find someone to fill the gap made with a potential departure. Take Edmonton for example, last year Jones paid a fortune for Lawler, but he was basically just a loaner player. His departure made CAP space for Jones to pay again a lot for Eugene Lewis. Next free agency period Lewis will go looking for a bigger paycheck and Jones will use more CAP to acquire another big name
The question that comes to my mind is "When will these huge payoffs come to an end" or will the CAP be forced to increase. Something has to give!


The Jones example is probably not the best since he has a 2 year deal. But huge payoffs are going to happen for star players. And as much as people think paying receivers that kind of money is not worth it, in the NFL the top paid non-QB players on offence are receivers. The Argos set the bar for receivers in 2019 when they paid Walker $275,000. So last year you saw Lawler & Duke making that kind of money & this year Lewis & Lawler again.

It's all about managing your money. Jones can "buy" top receiver talent because he has a CAP friendly QB for the next 2 years & has signed a lot of the players for 2 years. Wpg & Hamilton have 2 very expensive QB's for the next 3 years so will have to juggle their $$ for other talent a lot.

I don't see things changing much.