The new NFL CBA, Arceneaux and implications for CFL players

From the 55 Yard line,

The NFL's back after ending its lockout earlier this week thanks to the league and its players association agreeing on a new collective bargaining agreement, but that new CBA could alter the relationship between the NFL and the CFL on at least one front. As Brad Biggs of The National Football Post reported Tuesday, the NFL's new CBA now counts signing bonuses for CFL players as signing bonuses for undrafted free agents, and imposes a team-per-team cap of $75,000 for all undrafted free agents. Previously, CFL players were treated under a different category.
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I think Arceneaux maybe O.K. to stick with Minnesota as it does say in the article that the Vikings have found/other ways to get around the signing bonus.

Great article PiCat and thanks for sharing.

I think the bottom line is whatever the rules in place, with all the money flying around in the NFL, if an NFL team owner is intent on a CFL player after the two years are up, that team owner will find a way to get the player the money upfront even though the teams can’t pull what the Vikings did for Arceneaux any more.

Here's a link to the CFL Insider report that Dave Naylor did on the ramifications of the new NFL CBA on CFL players wanting to go south (starts at the 55 second mark):

If the NFL didn’t play, just think of the major influx of NFL players showing up at CFL practice sites on Monday morning seeking to play somewhere in 2011.

What would the bald/non-bald coaches do when there’s three Anthony Calvillo-like NFL QBs that showup at each of the eight team’s practice fields?

How would that work??? Yes, I realize the NFL will play, but what if? Total wholesale changes in the roster at the blink of an eye???

Except that NFL players under contract can't sign a CFL contract. The league put in a rule back in 2007 that doesn't allow for NFL players with valid contracts to be signed by CFL teams.

The NFL and CFL have recognized each other's contracts longer than that. Are you thinking of the Ricky Williams rule about not signing players who are under NFL suspension?

@EZ Football Rankings - no NFL players would have been signing with CFL teams because they would have had to commit for a minimum of 2 years because of the removal of the option year window.

what's with his Bald vs non-Bald coaches shtick?

Yes, that's the rule. Sorry, I thought it extended beyond suspensions.

The original agreement covered players under valid contracts with an NFL team and was clarified to include those under suspension as well as when the league was inactive due to strike or lockout.

I can see the NFL now treating CFL players as undrafted free-agents since the special category for CFL players signing with the NFL in their option year is gone. So, with contracts being honoured, there is really no such thing as a "CFL player" being signed by the NFL - they are simply free-agents unsigned to any team (NFL or CFL).

My guess is to see comments on how some of us posters respond.

It's the sequel to the Fat versus Skinny coaches routine that you missed whilst you were out for months.

Found a guy who's both:

I think Marcelle at Hamilton is overrated and gets away with stuff and it's probably because of his looks.

Back to the CBA: If there was no agreement (there is now) you'd see tons of players reporting to CFL camps. Don't agree with the other findings folks are putting up here. With five games in the books, the coach has to decide to bring in superb talent for one year only at the risk of making changes with lesser guys who already know the system. I'd be tempted to make wholesale changes for a year.

NFL players with valid NFL contracts, even during a lockout are barred from playing in the CFL. It's not a matter of you disagreeing with "other findings folks are putting up," it's a matter of you disagreeing with fact. It would be like you arguing that Stephen Harper isn't the prime minister of Canada or that Barack Obama isn't the president of the United States. Those are facts. So is the fact that NFL players who have contracts cannot play in the CFL. What part of that seems to be tripping you up? It seems pretty cut and dry to me.

Ask anyone who's ever been to camp in both leagues, including everyone who has started in both leagues, and you'll probably hear that the talent level difference is significantly less than you're implying. It's obviously there and not inconsequential, but it's not some outrageously wide chasm.

Given that 1) the players coming in don't know the system, 2) the players coming in don't know football with unlimited motion, 3 downs, 12 players a side and big fields where mobility is far more important and strength far less so, 3) the players coming in would be gone after a year leaving the team to almost completely rebuild, possibly while upsetting guys who would be key players in the rebuild by bringing in players to play ahead of them when they were supposed to be playing a key role, and 4) almost every one of the players coming up that has enough of a talent advantage to make it worth making a change is probably used to making more money a season than an entire CFL team is allowed to spend under the salary cap ... I highly doubt we'd see very much activity, if any.

he must be missing a few shoe strings...

A new troll has appeared under the CFL forum bridge since you left. but i am guessing you have put that together by now.

With the lame NFL preseason starting this weekend and ending practically speaking with 30 teams playing their fourth and last preseason game on Thursday, 1 September, it will be interesting to watch the shuffling again this year after especially most of the second games have been played as of next Saturday, 20 August.

The NFL cuts starting anew on Sunday 21 August should make for an interesting rest of the month off the field for both leagues with the higher impact for the CFL I would think starting as early as 9 September.

I'm certainly looking forward to all the new threads to come about the shuffling of rosters during the quiet time starting after next weekend with only two games, for every team has some definite sore spots that need attention.

Included in the above will be also players on the CFL shopping list and/or retooling pool for key shortages due to skill deficiency and/or injury on any given team. The more teams wait though, the better the choices.

The cuts have barely begun, but look for the next batches on

Sunday, 14 August
Saturday, 20 August

before long lists on the last two Sundays and Mondays in August.

Then it's whoever is left for the last preseason games ending practically Saturday, 27 August and the final cuts to follow with for the most part the choicest of players with skills and abilities either league in many cases.

Now with the 2-year minimum CFL CBA though, I don't expect near as many new players to the CFL to head north but we'll see.

Fantuz and Arceneaux haven't done themselves any favors in camp or preseason action and could be cut. Question becomes do they come back north right away or wait around hoping for a PR spot. My guess is Fantuz comes back north, Arceneaux waits it out, primarily because IMO he would have to wait 2 years to get another shot in the NFL with a new CFL contract as I don't think he was an option year guy but I could be mistaken. Both of those guys have been hurt by the shorter camps and not having the OTAs that were lost because of the lockout IMO. They started lower on the depth chart and didn't get as many opportunity to learn, improve, and move up. That's the gamble they took though signing with the lockout looming. Browner on the other hand has gotten first team reps out in Seattle and looks like he could make the squad. Phillip Hunt has played well but buried behind other guys in Philly but my guess is they try get him on the PR if they don't have room on their active roster. John Chick seems to have moved up the depth chart in Indy and looks to be staying there. McIntyre could stick with the Jets too.
Seems like the guys likelier to make the jump are the rush end types that can get to the QB, not receivers. I've read on Fantuz and Arceneaux that their route running has not been spot on and I wonder if that's comes down to a difference in the field size. Route patterns are not going to differ much between the 2 leagues. The CFL field offers more space and maybe more forgivable so exact route running isn't a necessity whereas on the smaller NFL field the routes need to be that much more precise.