Argos asking veteran players to restructure contracts

The new Toronto Argonauts regime, led by general manager Jim Popp, has asked several veterans to restructure their contracts, per sources.

Several of those players asked to be released, restructure or traded when the team was without a general manager or head coach in late January and early February, hoping to take advantage of the free agent market. Now they are being asked to restructure after teams around the league have allocated a significant portion of their cap money for 2017.

Canadian linebacker Thomas Miles was asked to restructure and then got released on Feb. 28, just before a roster bonus was due on March 1. He quickly inked a deal with the Bombers after the Argos sent him packing.

Sources say one of the players the Argos are asking to take a pay cut is Canadian defensive end Ricky Foley, he’s due a roster bonus April 1. The 34-year-old, who missed four games last season with a flared nerve in his foot, previously held the longest active consecutive games played streak at 182.

It’s worth noting that when playing for current Argos defensive coordinator and then-Riders head coach Corey Chamblin, Foley rang up 20 sacks in two seasons (2013 and 2014) with Saskatchewan, while winning a Grey Cup together in 2013.

Foley has played 32 games over the past two seasons for the double blue, recording 69 tackles, 10 sacks and two forced fumbles. From 2010-2012 Foley suited up for the Argos, including starting in Toronto’s 2012 victory in the 100th Grey Cup where he made four tackles, one sack and recovered a fumble to earn Most Valuable Canadian in that CFL championship game.

Overall, Foley has played for three different CFL teams – Lions, Argos and Riders – during 11 CFL seasons while winning a Grey Cup with each franchise. Eight of those years the York University product played in every single game possible for his team. He’s made 346 career tackles, 60 sacks, 56 special teams tackles, 10 forced fumbles, one interception and scored one touchdown in 182 regular season games. Foley’s best season came on 2009 with BC when he amassed a career-high-tying 12 sacks and won the CFL’s Most Outstanding Canadian award.

Popp officially took over as general manager on Feb. 27.

Justin Dunk

Justin Dunk

Justin Dunk was a five-year starter at quarterback for the University of Guelph. He covers the league for Sportsnet and 3DownNation.
Justin Dunk

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About Justin Dunk (422 Articles)
Justin Dunk was a five-year starter at quarterback for the University of Guelph. He covers the league for Sportsnet and 3DownNation.

12 Comments on Argos asking veteran players to restructure contracts

  1. Jimmy Breslin // March 30, 2017 at 7:20 pm //

    There’s Popp being Popp again and it stinks.

    One more embarrassing blow to the league’s rep. In their feverish attempt to rip off the players to save money for the owners they remind everyone why the CFL is considered a joke in so many circles. It’s an absolute shame because the quality of play is awesome given how little money they actually pay these guys. Call me biased in favour of the players ? No problem guilty as charged.

    I go to games to watch the players. What a novel idea !

    • Jimmy. I agree with your bias in favour of the players, but the money does not go to the owners. Each team spends 99.999% of the salary cap … so when a player takes a cut the money is spent on other players. Foley is being asked to take a cut so that Popp has flexibility to bring someone else in and /or pay someone else on the roster more. And you are right … great product but the players earn peanuts.

      • Jimmy Breslin // March 31, 2017 at 2:28 am //

        Fair enough Amicus but team ownership and the league make it sound like the Cap is somehow something that was imposed on them by some higher being. They set the limits and the players are mere pawns. It’s a whole new world out there now, pro sport is a most desirable commodity for advertisers in their attempts to reach consumers in this fractured new multi-media driven society. While the CFL will never be the NFL (and what will ?) it’s still a sure-fire way to reach a desired audience. Why would Bell even decide to invest in a weak franchise like the Argos ? because they know the reach of the league nationally. Stop exploiting what makes it so attractive. The players. And by the way the CFLPA need new tactics.

      • Ask Nick Boulay how to deal with Popp. He does not have a pot to piss in for the coming season. Hold your ground hang on to your money and expect to be released before next season.

  2. stampland // March 30, 2017 at 8:23 pm //

    new management new priorities and focus

  3. I have never been a Jim Poppins fan, coaching or GM. Foley will tell you that he bleeds double blue. How much of the restructuring money will go to Tressman and Popp. This appears to be a loophole or taktic Popp likes to use.

  4. Jim Fleck // March 30, 2017 at 10:48 pm //

    The CFLPA really needs to rectify the percent of revenue the players get. With being more in line with other professional leagues in regards to this it will protect the players more when it comes to contracts being revised or broken. Do the GMs, HCs Assistant coaches plus other football ops employees get their contracts revised or reduced once the contract takes effect? Very unlikely!!

  5. That’s what Popp did with the Als all the time. To me, Foley is the ultimate team guy and I think he still has plenty of gas in the tank. Why you bring back a 32 year old tailback like Whitaker doesn’t make much sense to me. If I was Popp I would be asking Drew Willy to take another pay cut. Willy should not be earning more than a base of $150,000

  6. Craig Maw // April 1, 2017 at 10:03 pm //

    Did they not learn with Chad Owens! Lets just gut the team of players people actually know. As a life long Argo fan(since 1967)I love they way Ricky Played heart on his sleeve, Blood in his eye. I will sorely miss him.
    Cmaw

  7. i wonder if whining shwan lemon was asked to restucure his salary i doudt it he is to good for that haha

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