Ticats CEO Mitchell on the future of Collaros, Masoli and Manziel

Ticats CEO Scott Mitchell dropped a juicy hint about how the team’s quarterback situation could play out.

Appearing on Sportsnet The FAN 590’s The Jeff Blair Show Tuesday Mitchell was asked what could happen at football’s most important position in Hamilton.

“When June [Jones] talks he’s very forthright in all of his conversations with everybody, including the media. So when he talks about his confidence in Zach [Collaros] being a good quarterback and has an opportunity to be a great quarterback in this league, he means that. And I know he also is incredibly fond of Jeremiah. We see it as a good problem to have, but we’re certainly going to have to deal with it and I suspect that’ll happen over time,” Mitchell said.

“We’re not in any hurry, I think people kind of misconstrue the timing of this, we’re certainly not in a hurry to do anything. It’s something we can be deliberate about. I think there’s other situations around the league in terms of who is hired and who is back and how staffs are constructed and how they want to do things that may have an impact on those decisions too.”

Collaros went 0-8 as a starter in 2017 while Masoli was 6-4 and nearly got the Tabbies into the playoffs as the team turned around. There is one more year left on Collaros’ contract and Masoli is a pending free agent.

“I think different situations in different cities that might be a different focus. I think in our particular case, June talked about it yesterday, it’s highly unlikely that we could figure out a way to have both Jeremiah and Zach back, but obviously one of the two is going to be back as our starting quarterback and then it’ll be a discussion about who we fill in underneath the starter,” Mitchell said.

One of the quarterbacks who could be behind Collaros or Masoli in the Hammer: Johnny Manziel.

“This won’t be a situation as you’ve seen with some other places where you’ve brought in high-profile people and they’re plugged in as starters and they’re building the franchise around it. I think if Johnny Manziel decides to come up to Canada there’s probably a number of cities where he’d be coming in as a guy to show what he can do, there might be one of two cities where he would be coming in and they might be a little bit more proactive about building their franchise around him or another high-profile NFL player, but that won’t be the case with us,” Mitchell said.

“If he comes to Canada and if Hamilton ends up being the right situation for him, obviously it’s completely dependant on the process that the CFL is going through with Johnny right now, he’d be competing for a position, but he wouldn’t be coming into camp as a starter.”

Hamilton’s head coach raved about Manziel after his three-year contract extension was made official on Monday.

“It will be a Warren Moon situation to be quite honest. I just think he has the potential to be a great football player,” Jones said.

Mitchell explained what the 64-year-old bench boss meant about the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner.

“The truth of the matter is when you do your due diligence, we’ve done this around people we’ve got great relationships with in the NFL, and you gotta be careful because some of them know the league better than others, I think that’s a fairly unanimous consent that he would be – if things were right and if he was in the right structure and if he had the right coaching staff and he was in the right frame of mind – that he’d have a great opportunity to be a great player,” Mitchell said.

“But I think what June was really focused on was physically – he’s been at two workouts with Johnny, he’s looked at a ton of film of Johnny, I think he was surprised by the arm strength of Johnny on a big field. That maybe there might have been some question marks there that weren’t based in substance. But I think he’s talking about physically the tools, all the skill sets are there. The question is mentally and from a makeup perspective is he committed to being successful up here and that’s the question that needs to be answered.”

So, might Manziel be playing in the CFL and for the Tiger-Cats in 2018?

“I will tell you that we’ve definitely had a lot of interest in Johnny from around the league and in all honesty, he would be treated – if he passes the process and that’s a big if, we certainly haven’t been given any conclusive thought as to whether that’s going to happen for sure or not, there is some work to do there. But if that happens he will be treated like every other player that we’ve got as a prospect in terms of what’s the best for the franchise whether we bring him in or whether there’s a better fit for him and for us with another franchise,” Mitchell said.

“But I would certainly like to see him get through this process, I think that would be a very positive sign for him as a person. That he’s contrite, that he’s gone through a rehabilitation process, that he understands the mistakes he’s made, that he’s committed to being a good citizen in this league. I think you guys know Randy Ambrosie well enough now to know Randy’s going to be very disciplined about it. And if that happens and if he’s in the CFL I think it’ll be great for the league and we’ll see if that ends up being with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.”

Full audio can be found here.


32 Comments on Ticats CEO Mitchell on the future of Collaros, Masoli and Manziel

  1. Oskee Wee Wee // December 5, 2017 at 2:14 pm //

    So they’ll be signing him shortly then.

  2. OH? Is Scott Mitchell just mopping up the words of what maybe June Junes inadvertently let “out of the bag”. Pertaining to the QB situation in the 2018 season coming for Ti-Cats? Looks and sounds if June Junes spoke out of line. Scott Mitchell is just keeping the inevitable that is going to be happening in the near future. Mitchell stated that Hamilton won’t be able to keep Collaros and Masoli together this year again. So when and if Manziel is signed or his rights traded, going to be very interesting scenario on just how the QB situation plays out for Hamilton in 2018? Looks like the writing is on the wall for Collaros to remain a Ti-Cat though…

  3. There is something I don’t understand about how the Ti-Cat organization operates. Over the past “eventful” year, I’ve read plenty of quotes from Ti-Cat owner Bob Young, CEO Scott Mitchell, VP Football Operations Kent Austin, and coach June Jones regarding player/coach movements, signings, and speculations. That’s odd enough. I’ve heard nothing from GM Eric Tillman. From the outside, this seems to indicate a very muddled way of making decisions about player personnel and confused accountability. I can’t think of another professional sports team where you have so many team officials weighing in publicly on player comings and goings. Normally, the GM stands and delivers on team make-up and the coach speaks to on-field performance. I find the situation in Hamilton very odd.

    • Sea of Dead // December 5, 2017 at 8:47 pm //

      The Cat organization situation odd? The results, or more precisely the lack of them, speak for themselves!! Two people control the show and the others are just names on a door.

  4. Paul Bomber // December 5, 2017 at 2:54 pm //

    A lot of people who know a LOT more about football than I ever will are saying Manziel could flourish in the CFL. Fact is, by training camp, he’ll have missed 2 entire seasons, a concussion and arm issues in the last season he did play (never mind the “character concerns”) … I just think it’s time to stick a fork in this one.

    • Nawww Jonney Football will be resilient once he is fueled entirely by Canadian beer( 5%+++ and the many other drugs this tire fire of a guy has partaken in the past, lol . I am sure under his Canadian beer consumption his woman assulting arm swing will improve and he will be an outstanding role model for the young living in the Hamilton area. mind you this if in line with a team that wanted to hire another wife beater and rapist earlier this year and has the glowing example of Tillman as its GM!! Much to be proud of Ti-cat admin !!!!

      • Man in the mirror // December 5, 2017 at 9:39 pm //

        Man getfit51 I can only imagine what your family and colleagues must have to go through. You must own your on your own private mountain. I mean how else can anyone explain that higher than high moral ground you stand on. I’d love to see you cast the 1st stone. Especially if those who live in such righteousness. Were to catch on fire if they truly didn’t deserve to be in such a top tier group.

    • Paul – it’s going to be about how he performs in the training camp and pre-season. He has to earn the start, if he has arm issues etc and he can’t get the job done then he doesn’t make the team.
      No team will give a player a position because of their reputation or how they did in college or the NFL

  5. A monkey wrench could be thrown into the machine works if another CFL team bids upwards of $500,000 for Jerry Mazoli.That could change plans for Johnny football.Would the Cats still entertain keeping Mazoli if his price rockets up?Does the Cat organization let Colaros go just switch to the new high priced Mazoli ?

    If that happens then Johnny football would have to be for trade value and of no use to the Cats.Some teams may be eyeing Mazoli as the next great passer and have the money to spend.

    • Eddiefelson // December 5, 2017 at 4:47 pm //

      Bahahha…500k for masoli?
      200 tops

      • Bunny Muffin // December 5, 2017 at 6:15 pm //

        Can’t wait for the coming season for Masoli to prove to all the doubters he’s a competitive, successful starter. He’ll be back with the cats while Collaros suits up in double blue

    • Dundas dude // December 5, 2017 at 10:11 pm //

      Masoli has been in the league a long time and only flourished in the last half of the 2017 season. I would think it a big gamble for him to move from the Jones coached team now…Maas and Printers, for example, were disasters after they left teams where they had found success. Manziel sounds like a long shot worth pursuing… but he’s gotta be clean and earn the job. I don’t want to see Collaros given away and subsequently becoming another Calvillo (I wish him success, wherever he is, but would like to see him help Hamilton win a Cup or two).

  6. I see some issues and possible smoke screen from Ambrosie. He may be making Mssr. Football write essays how he made mistakes and what he learned or something like that. But it may be a smokescreen because Johnnies former college coach at [email protected] Kevin Sumlin got fired and turned down interest from University of Central Florida. Sumlin may be looking to follow the footsteps of The current Seahawks coach who left USC and has a mobile QB (Wilson). This could be an epic vacancy year for NFL coaches. ESPN is estimating up to 10. If Sumlin snags one he would want to bring Herr Fussball on for the huge spring roster and go from there. Senor Futbol may still end up in the CFL but it would be just before training camp starts and as a back up for sure.

  7. Seems maybe they are buying their time with Manziel and if he gets the ok from the league to play they will trade him re sign Masoli and have Masoli and collaros battle it out in camp ????interesting

  8. No way Manziel will be playing in Hamilton. If he’s cleared to play up here then the Cat’s will trade his rights

  9. Tiger Chick // December 5, 2017 at 7:02 pm //

    My god man. Let it go and go with what you know. Manziel is crap. Not only has he not played in the last few years but now as a DEADBEAT we are risking the entire franchaise on a has been. Get your stuff (for lack of a better word together. Go with what you know and make the fans happy. Manziels reputation will only tarnish what has been built in Hamilton. If its all about money and not about fans and believing then season’s tickets holders and the like should hold off signing. This is BULL.

    • Sea of Dead // December 5, 2017 at 9:09 pm //

      A pathetic 2016 campaign, 0-8 to start 2017 … I think we’re already pretty much tarnished. Bring on Manziel and let’s finish it off.

    • 3rd and 1 // December 5, 2017 at 9:52 pm //

      You sound like a passionate Tiger Cats fan Tiger Chick and I applaud that. However I wouldn’t be to worried about what you feel would tarnish the reputation of the team. I’m sorry to say that there really isn’t much of a reputation to tarnish. The hiring of Art Briles went beyond the desperation of a winless CFL team. That right there buried any solid reputation a football franchise could have. Even if he was immediately let go by Mitchell.
      The facts are the facts today. Professional teams are going to bring in anybody and everybody they can to help win. “WIN” That’s all that matters.
      They say there is no “I” in TEAM. But there is in WIN. So everything goes.
      Johnny will do just fine and once the fans hear him talk and how he wants to keep his nose clean and help the team. He will be forgiven and if he starts winning games. Well, then he will be loved.


  11. Manziel has to learn the Canadian game and Zach Collaros would be a much better tutor than Masoli. I would rather Cats Go with the Collaros/Manziel combination then Masoli/Manziel. Collaros will restructure his contract in order to be part of this.

  12. Is anyone else amazed that Edmonton would be able to keep both Reilly and Franklin this past year and Hamilton could not keep Collaros and Masoli?

    • BigRedMachine // December 6, 2017 at 12:09 am //

      I don’t get what you’re saying. Both Franklin and Masoli are slated to become FAs this February.

  13. Johnny Manziel wii pick up cfl and Jones offence fast. If Hamilton blows the opportunity to sign manziel and he is traded tocwhatever team they will have a run at the grey cup. Masoli is not as talented as manziel so he may start b but will end up on the bench as a back up. Manziel is the draw for all the teams and fans will be out in each city to see his talent and at the same time want their team to beat him.

  14. Masoli/Faloney.

  15. Frank Sabados // December 6, 2017 at 3:56 pm //

    Mitchell is another huge problem with the Tiger Cats he should have been fired , that being said Zach is getting traded to the Toronto Argos bank on that happening soon

  16. No matter what team Manziel ends up with I think he will either be a BOOM or BUST guy. Will do extremely well like Ricky Ray did in his 1st year in the league or be a BUST like a number of former NFL QBs did over the years. Hope he does well, is a good teammate and brings the excitement he had in the NCAA to the CFL.

  17. Manziel will be Great. Masoli is an average QB at best. I think Cats let him walk. Collaros is due to make lots of money and you won’t know whether he has shaken his fear of injury play until he plays.

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