Don’t set the expectations too high for Mark Chapman

When the Ticats essentially traded Ryan Bomben to the Montreal Alouettes to move up in the draft from two to one, whomever the team selected was going to have high expectations heaped upon him.

So Mark Chapman, welcome to “Unrealistic Expectations City.”

It doesn’t roll off the tongue all that well.

But what should fans expect of Chapman in his inaugural season in black and gold? The Ticats seem to think that Chapman can come in and contribute right away, which is great to think, but much harder to execute.

Canadian receivers have not fared all that well in their first season, even ones who have become all-stars, award winners and Hall of Famers. It is tough to make the transition from college to the pros, and looking at what rookie receivers have done over the past 10 years further proves that.

For the purpose of this piece, I limited my research to players who were selected in the Top 20 of their draft class between 2008 to -17. There will be some players discussed that were selected outside the Top 20 and I will also talk about some of the most well-known receivers who were drafted prior to 2008. So with that out of the way, let’s dig in.

Last year saw three receivers picked in the Top 20 — Danny Vandervoort (3rd overall, B.C.), Nate Behar (5th overall, Edmonton) and Julan Lynch (17th overall, Calgary) — and Vandervoort led those players with 25 receiving yards and Lynch caught the most passes… with two. Behar, who famously held out to start the season, recorded goose eggs on his stat sheet. Last year’s top Canadian rookie receiver didn’t even hear his name called on draft night. Toronto’s Jimmy Ralph topped all receivers last year by catching 26 passes for 278 yards.

The draft class of 2016 also saw three receivers go in the top 20, with the Argos nabbing Brian Jones with the 4th overall pick, Calgary snagging Juwan Brescacin at No. 15 and the Ticats taking Mike Jones at No, 18. Jones would have the best rookie season of the bunch with 12 receptions for 128 yards and a touchdown, while Brescacin notched 4 receptions for 51 yards and Jones tallied two catches for 27 yards.

We saw four receivers go in the Top 20 in 2015, with Nic Demski leading the way when Saskatchewan picked the former Manitoba Bison 6th overall. After that we saw Jake Harty go to Ottawa at No. 10, Addison Richards go to Winnipeg and No. 11 and Lemar Durant get picked by Calgary at No. 18. Durant had the best season of the bunch, with 12 receptions for 170 yards and three touchdowns. Demski hauled in 13 passes for 165 yards, while Richards had one catch for 12 yards and Harty caught nothing for nothing.

Three receivers went in the Top 20 in 2014, with Edmonton taking Devon Bailey at No. 6, Ottawa selecting Scott McDonnell at No. 13 and Saskatchewan grabbing Alex Pierzchalski at No. 18. Bailey caught 17 passes for 219 yards, McDonnell caught 13 for 181 and one touchdown, while Pierzchalski caught just one pass for 12 yards in his rookie campaign.

The trend here is pretty apparent and continues at about the same clip every year that I looked at. S.J. Haidara went 12th overall to B.C. in 2013 and he caught just four passes for 40 yards that year. Shamawd Chambers (6th overall, Edmonton), had one of the better rookie seasons when he caught 37 passes for 390 yards and two touchdowns in 2012, but his fellow Top-20 mate was Giovanni Aprile who didn’t get an offensive stat to his name until last season.

The 2011 draft saw four receivers go in the top six, starting with Anthony Parker going third to Calgary and ending with Marco Iannuzzi going sixth to B.C. In between we had the Bombers select Jade Etienne at No. 4 and Edmonton pick Nate Coehoorn at No. 5. None of those players cracked the nine-catch barrier or went over 90 yards on the season and the best receiver to come out of that draft went 29th to the Stampeders: some dude named Brad Sinopoli, who was drafted as a quarterback, didn’t convert to receiver until 2013 and didn’t really become the league’s best Canuck pass catcher until he went to Ottawa in 2015.

In fact, the inarguable best Canadian rookie receiver to come out in the last 10 years was a guy that was run out of Hamilton because his numbers weren’t good enough: Sam Giguère. The Ticats selected Giguère with the 8th overall pick in 2008, but he didn’t arrive north until the 2012 season, so his rookie season comes with a huge asterisk because he spent four years honing his craft in the NFL. So he was a first-year CFLer, but far from a rookie. But even his numbers — 41 catches for 549 yards and one touchdown — weren’t earth-shattering, but they are hall of fame calibre compared to his fellow rookies, none of which cracked even the 400-yard mark in their first seasons.

So with these numbers being underwhelming, I decided to look at some players outside the last 10 years to see how they fared in their rookie seasons and the numbers were not any more encouraging.

Andy Fantuz, probably the best Canadian receiver of the last 15 years, was picked by the Roughriders with the third pick in 2006 draft, came into the CFL as the reigning Hec Creighton award winner and CIS all-time leader in receptions (189), yards (4,123) and touchdowns (41). He was, to put it bluntly, a monster at Western. His rookie numbers with the Riders put him in the upper echelon of rookie Canadian receivers, but his 30 catches for 408 yards and three touchdowns were not exactly eye-popping.

Ben Cahoon, who was the best Canadian receiver before Fantuz took the mantle, put up similar numbers to Fantuz with 33 catches for 471 yards and three scores. Again, not game-changing numbers.

But the two players that Chapman is mostly likely going to be compared to are the last two receivers to go No. 1 overall in the draft: Chris Bauman and Don Blair.

Bauman famously (at least in Hamilton) went first to the Ticats in 2007, while Blair went first to Edmonton in 1996. Bauman is a great cautionary tale of asking for too much too soon. He was thrust into a position as a rookie that he was not ready for, in some ways asked to be a franchise saviour, and when he didn’t post otherworldly numbers as a rookie (30 catches, 370 yards) the boo birds came out. Bauman never achieved the success you would hope the draft’s top player would and he was out of Hamilton after the 2010 season, floated around Alberta for a couple of years — he even won a Grey Cup with Calgary in 2014 when they beat… Hamilton … and last played one game with the Toronto Argonauts in 2015.

Blair had a better career than Bauman, but never really transcended the game like many thought he would after winning the Hec Creighton while with the Calgary Dinos. He never caught more than 64 passes in a single season and only once eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark.

So what does all this mean for Chapman? It means that even though Hamilton traded a lot to get him, and used the draft’s first pick to take him, you shouldn’t expect him to be a star right away. It takes time for even some of the game’s best to become the game’s best. Fantuz didn’t record his first 1,000-yard season until 2010, Ben Cahoon didn’t crack the 1,000-yard mark until his third season or the 100-catch mark until his sixth year in the league, and Jason Clermont needed three years before he went over 1,000 yards and he was the league’s top rookie his first season.

Chapman may end up being one of the best Canadian receivers in the game one day, but that day will not be in 2018. So temper expectations and expect growing pains.

June Jones and the Ticats staff might say they see him as a contributor right away, but history shows he won’t be.

Josh Smith

Josh Smith

Josh has been writing about the Ticats and the CFL since 2010 and was sporting his beard way before it was cool. Will be long after, too.
Josh Smith

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Josh Smith
About Josh Smith (379 Articles)
Josh has been writing about the Ticats and the CFL since 2010 and was sporting his beard way before it was cool. Will be long after, too.

76 Comments on Don’t set the expectations too high for Mark Chapman

  1. Ben Cahoon was American I believe.

    • Yes he was born in the USA, but like Chapman he had a mother who was born in Canada.
      Doesn’t seem right to me but they might as well bend the rules since Canadian born receivers are rare these days.

      Maybe it’s time to change the rule so that anyone that comes to play football in Canada and pays tax here is classed as a National.
      The rule right now is not helping teams produce Canadian receivers

      • or better just trash the national rules. Look at the NBA. Every team has 3-6 Euros now for 15 roster spots. Baseball is at least 30% non North American. and soccer… moreso

      • There was a rule many years ago that if a player stayed for a certain number of years they became a national (non-import at the time) but this would date back to the 1960’s I believe.

      • What more right do you need to be considered Canadian when you are born by a Canadian mother. Shocked Jeff.

  2. Ben Cahoon counted as a Canadian as a technicality for spending part of his childhood in Cardston, Alberta.

  3. Well how depressing! Thanks Josh. Hopefully he will put up better numbers than Giovanni Aprille!

    • Aprille has 3 catches in FOUR seasons.
      Maybe he will step up this year.

      • He must be the best special teams guy in the history of the universe to keep a spot on the team – kept hoping someone would snap him up in free agency but he just keeps hanging around like a bad case of indigestion.

      • Using two National receivers spelled the end for Austin and Collaros.

        • Cat Fan // May 18, 2018 at 3:59 pm //

          Possibly … skipping a run game while doing nothing to counter what the defense that was freed from worrying about a run game seemed to be more of a factor.

          Oh ya … being short on receivers and insisting Banks spent most of his time on ST seemed to be an issue as well.

  4. 3 catches minus 5 yards all from Manziel

  5. Kind of insulting that the best Canadian receiver, Brad Sinopoli doesn’t get one mention.
    Three seasons in Ottawa with over 1,000 yards, 91 catches last season despite missing 3 games and the playoffs.
    Canada is just no producing receivers the way it used to.
    The closest Canadian receiver to Sinopoli was Fulio-Guidino with 45 catches last year.
    Ticat fans were hoping that their first pick last year would be Vandervoort but he ended up going west and 1 catch. Behar was another guy that was expect to be a starter and zero catches.
    The chances of Chapman being a starter is pretty slim.

    • He was mentioned with the 2011 draft class:

      The 2011 draft saw four receivers go in the top six, starting with Anthony Parker going third to Calgary and ending with Marco Iannuzzi going sixth to B.C. In between we had the Bombers select Jade Etienne at No. 4 and Edmonton pick Nate Coehoorn at No. 5. None of those players cracked the nine-catch barrier or went over 90 yards on the season and the best receiver to come out of that draft went 29th to the Stampeders: some dude named Brad Sinopoli, who was drafted as a quarterback, didn’t convert to receiver until 2013 and didn’t really become the league’s best Canuck pass catcher until he went to Ottawa in 2015.

      • Cat Fan // May 16, 2018 at 4:04 pm //

        AFAICT – switching to Ottawa meant being targeted more often, helping make the best Canadian receiver happen.

        His talent was on full display with his Calgary team mates raving about him after the switch to receiver. As long as he stayed in Calgary, the talent was there but the offense would have kept him from showing his stuff.

        I can recall the 2014 Cats covering the hand off well to Sinopoli where he was supposed to make it look like a sweep then catch the defense napping by throwing a pass. The defense had the pass covered but Sinopoli recognised it wasn’t there quickly. He tucked the ball under his arm then deked his way through the defense to score what turned out to be the game winning points in a 10 – 7 games.

    • Cat Fan // May 16, 2018 at 3:56 pm //

      A bit sensitive are you so that you see insults where there are none?

      The point under discussion is how likely is a drafted Canadian receiver to make significant contributions in their rookie year.

      While Sinopoli’s accomplishments as a receiver have been great – they start when he was converted from QB to receiver in his third CFL season.

      In case you forgot or missed it, Sinopoli played his college football as a QB. He was drafted as a QB by Calgary. His rookie year of 2011 was spent as a 3rd string QB and placekick holder. Before the start of year two, he was released where no other team picked him up. Tate’s early season injury resulted in an emergency re-signing of Sinopoli as again, a third string QB.

      Where is the insult of skipping a QB when discussing a receiver?

      On a side note – I bet all the other teams regret not talking to Sinopoli in 2012 to convert him to receiver!!

  6. It is a special situation in Hamilton with Coach Jones. If Coach ends up deciding Chapman should be involved he’ll have a big season. With all the moves the Cats made just to draft him you’d think the Cats drafted him to use him. Hope the Cats have a plan. The past is the past.

  7. Marc Aubrey // May 16, 2018 at 4:02 pm //

    As far as I know he is still unsigned. Why all this talk.
    Its like putting the cart in front of the mule!!!!!!!

    • He didn’t get much of a sniff south of the border so I cannot imagine why he would not sign – the Cats traded up to get him – they are probably going to get out the Brinks truck to make him an offer.

    • Cat Fan // May 16, 2018 at 4:20 pm //

      Probably because Chapman has talked on TSN radio about how he likes that the Cats are the closest team, closer than his college was, to his home of Port Huron.

      He also talks about wanting to earn his teammates trust, having talked with his brother who played for the Cats in addition to HC Jones and that he is ready to go to work.

      He has been invited to an NFL team’s mini-camp so until he signs, there is no guarantee. Barring an NFL contract, he seems to be sure he wants to play in the CFL.

      • Cat Fan // May 16, 2018 at 4:46 pm //

        The Giant’s mini-camp did not result in a contract so unless the contract negotiations are messed up – it seems likely he will be in training camp.

        No reason I can see that he would think one year in the CFL would do much to generate NFL team interest.

  8. This article really shows how far the quality of NI receivers has plummeted.

    Why are NI receivers so unproductive in the past five to eight years? There been WAY too many scrubs like Jade Etienne and Jordo Sisco that have been absolute busts.

    I can understand the CIS guys being unable to adapt to the much faster and more physical pro level, but even the NCAA guys are invisible.

    Back in 2009 and 2010 Regina started THREE (3) NIs at receiver – – Fantuz, Rob Bagg and Getz – – and the Canadian Air Force was very good.

    Can you imagine any team starting three NI receivers today? That’d be hopeless. They’d be lucky to combine for 1,000 yards.

    • It’s pathetic, it’s a glaring example why the NI ratio isn’t working.
      I went through the rosters of every team in the CFL and looked at the stats for Canadian receivers.
      The Esks don’t have one Canadian receiver that caught a pass last year.
      The Ticats two Canadian receivers had 4 receptions between them.
      The Argos aren’t much better either.
      Teams are starting Canadian receivers but they aren’t catching the ball.
      QBs aren’t throwing to them, it’s probably by design.
      Fill the quota of Canadians, put one or two on the field as receivers but don’t throw to them.

      • Cat Fan // May 16, 2018 at 5:25 pm //

        AFAICT – your assumptions are what is pathetic.

        The Eskes had Zylstra (1687 yards), Williams (715 yards), Hazelton (709 yards) and were estatic that Walker returned part way through the year (634 yards), Bowman who was underachieving (534), Bryant (482), Watson (234) and Stafford (265).

        Which established Edm receiver are you expecting to be pulled off the field so that a 2017 draft pick (Behar) or a 2013 draft pick (Adjei) that played out his NCAA eligibility would be on the field as a receiver?

        AFAICT – the reason they aren’t catching the ball is that they are starters on ST players that are not on the field when the QB is.

        If they truly are not catching the pass – why do the CFL stats know about Zylstra and company’s drops but not these guys?

        • ….and you missed the point completely!!
          Zylstra, Bowman etc are import players. Starters in their first year.
          The Canadian receivers are drafted and it’s rare to start in their first year.
          As the article states “Mark Chapman, welcome to “Unrealistic Expectations City.”

          You use the Esks example but it’s the same with EVERY other team except Ottawa.

          • Cat Fan // May 18, 2018 at 5:40 pm //

            Did you or did you not imply that Canadian receivers are incompetent when you wrote “Teams are starting Canadian receivers but they aren’t catching the ball … put one or two on the field as receivers but don’t throw to them.”?

            My main point was that is unfair to be talking as if the QB was on the field while they were.

            And Zylstra had the same issue as Behr as he was not on the field for most of 2016. He was on the practice roster for twelve games. It seems his training camp wasn’t good enough to take a receivers job away from Bowman or Walker.

            Bowman on the other hand, started the first regular season game of his rookie year, 2008.

  9. CFL lover // May 16, 2018 at 4:33 pm //

    Not sure we should be dumping all the blame on native born receivers. CFL staffs are shall we say somewhat biased towards American athletes, perhaps with good reason but given a fair chance I think Canadians could absolutely develop into legit pass catchers. Fantuz did it of course and, yes, Brad Sinopli is another great example. He got a chance because he landed on a second year expansion team. The Redblacks, with two wins to their credit in year one were ready to give him starter snaps, maybe because he already had three years experience in the league but, face it, what did they have to lose ? The rest is history. In their expansion year before Brad arrived Ottawa did use, although very sparingly, their second round pick Scott Macdonell, I guess because their receiver talent pool was thin. If you check his record in 2014 he had one of the best yards per catch ratios in the league. The CFL stats are there to back me up. Thing is they rarely used him but when they did he produced, almost 14 yards per catch in fact. After Brad arrived the Redblacks forgot about any other Canadian receiver as a starter. CFL squads rarely go with two non-imports at that position. Hey that’s a team decision but if a guy can’t see the field he sure as hell can’t develop. Before the haters come out of the woodwork I’m not suggesting a vast conspiracy against native born players but I think given a fair shot others like Andy Fantuz, Jason Clermont or Brad Sinopoli would also break out.

    My two cents folks, agree/disagree, fine with me, but we all have our point of view. I happen to like watching Canadian born athletes succeed. Let’s just say I’m biased like that 🙂

    • I fully agree there’s some absolutely clueless GMs and coaches throughout the CFL, and many have an inherent bias against Canadian players.

      But you’d have to acknowledge guys like Jade Etienne, Jordo Sisco, Addy Richards, Gio Aprile and Al Pierzchslski are completely useless.

      There’s nothing close to the NI talent at WR like there is at RB with Andrew Harris and Messam being the two best backs in the league over the past few years.

    • I think they do get a fair shot. Fantuz and Sinopoli proved that they can actually catch the ball in traffic, take a hit and get yards after the catch.
      Obviously, the other Canadian receivers can’t do that.
      I like watching Canadian athletes too especially if they are talented like a Sinopoli.
      I can’t say I enjoy watching a Giovanni Aprille or Coates or any of the other dozen or so Canadians that are there to fill the ratio. Can’t say I enjoy watching Canadian O-linemen or any O-linemen, unless one lays a hit on a would be tackler.
      But when it come to pro-sports I really couldn’t care less if there are Canadians on my team.
      This ain’t the Olympics !!

    • Cat Fan // May 16, 2018 at 5:48 pm //

      While I agree it was key for Sinopoli to play receiver for RedBlacks, there is no way I can make “three year’s experience” accurate.

      If you mean as a receiver then he had only two years experience at that position (2013 and 2014) when he signed a FA contract with the RedBlacks.

      If you mean in the CFL then he had four years of experience (2011, cut before the 2012 season, re-signed when Tate was injured in the second game of 2012 plus the two years at receiver).

      Calgary played him as a receiver for two years so signing as FA with Ottawa was more about a bigger role in the offense as well as coming home than playing receiver. I suspect he wouldn’t have the big numbers if he stayed in Calgary but he had already locked up a job as a receiver before then.

      • CFL lover // May 16, 2018 at 7:45 pm //

        Completely agree with you as far as playing time in Calgary goes, all I was trying to point out was that when he joined the Redblacks Sinopoli was a seasoned pro, Desjardins and Campbell knew that and I suspect they also knew how good he could be as a receiver once turned loose to learn his position and blossom. That was not going to happen in Calgary. Period ! – Hence my argument that guys need to be out there if they’re ever going to develop. For Canadian receivers the hook seems to yank them back in a big hurry. Fair unfair, who knows, but they sure don’t get the leeway that their American brothers seem to get. And one more thing about Brad Sinopoli, a total character guy. Just based on that it blows me away that the Stamps let him go.

        • Cat Fan // May 18, 2018 at 6:11 pm //

          Campbell was the DC in Calgary when Sinopoli made the team as a receiver in 2013. Burris probably had lots of comments from the Calgary players that he talked to.

          Hufnagel commented after Sinopoli’s first game “He’s catching the ball in the darker part of the field, fighting for yards and extending the drive, I was very pleased with Brad’s game.”

          As for the Stamps “letting him go” – I am pretty sure that Hufnagel would have preferred to re-sign Sinopoli but understood the increased playing time plus the attraction of family in the Ottawa area as well as it being home for Sinopoli.

          Either way, I find it strange that some seem to be drawing conclusions from a lack of stats while ignoring factors that have kept future CFL league leaders off the field, regardless of the passport.

    • NO not the “Canadian don’t get a chance argument again”
      that is not true – Brad Sinopoli is staring because he’s a great receiver, the other Canadians are not starting or catching passes because they are NOT good enough.
      There is a lot of pressure now on Chapman, first pick and played in the NCAA. He will get his chance and no the coaches aren’t going to ignore him because he’s Canadian.
      I can tell you that coaches are colour blind – in other words when they watch players they couldn’t care less if they are import or non-import and that’s the same for the Canadian and the non-Canadian coaches.

      • MoneyTeam // May 18, 2018 at 9:06 am //

        Can we just stop calling him Canadian please? He isnt Canadian, he is American born and raised and is a US citizen. Qualifies under league rules bc mother was born in Canada. He is American and product of the American system. Bottom line.

      • Cat Fan // May 18, 2018 at 6:13 pm //

        IMO Sinopoli is starting because he is a great as well as smart athlete. He isn’t the only receiver who has started in the CFL after converting from being exclusively QB but they seem to be rare.

  10. This guy was a waste of a pick, err, WILL be a waste of a pick.

  11. That’s why it was such a nonsensical trade to give away a starting NI OLineman just to move up and draft this receiver.

  12. This whole article is bogus . You can’t compare one reciever to another . Every player is different and how they perform.

    • The common denominator among the majority of Canadian receivers drafted in the past decade is that they’ve been horrible.

      • White Horse // May 16, 2018 at 9:07 pm //

        Great to hear Area51 usual negative posts to all things Canadain in the CFL.
        GO AWAY CHILD…getting sick of you.

  13. MoneyTeam // May 16, 2018 at 6:47 pm //

    Would be curious to know how many of those WRs drafted and noted in the article were “Americans” fresh out of the NCAA. I’m going to make a general statement and say, for the most part, CIS receivers who grew up in Canada are just not going to be as good as NCAA receivers who grew up in the USA. Comparing Vandervoort to Chapman (in my opinion) is probably apples to oranges. I think you could make the same claim across the 2008-2017 draft years. There are exceptions to the rule, but if there just werent any (many?) NCAA WRs in those draft years then it would be easy to assume they just werent talented enough and thus Chapman may be an exception.

    • The majority of NI WRs drafted in the past decade have been from the CIS but the NCAA guys have been just a terrible.

      Natey Adjei from UB and Iannuzi from Harvard have been mediocre. Lamar Durant and Spencer Watt from SFU qualify as “NCAA” players too.

      • MoneyTeam // May 16, 2018 at 7:33 pm //

        We can unpack this a bit further. And obviously we are speculating on his potential, so there’s no wrong answers. But, I would not include the SFU guys as they’re not NCAA Div I, and Adjei/Iannuzi were not drafted high. Adjei was Rd 3 and Iannuzi was Rd 1 (6th). They’re also both Canadian born and raised.

        Athleticism aside, a lot of the reason why Americans are better than us is because they started playing the game a lot younger and played throughout their amateur careers against a higher skill level and in a better system. I’m not suggesting Chapman going to blow this season away but again, I feel he has a bigtime advantage when we make these types of comparisons.

        • That is why we produce better hockey players.
          grassroots football is picking up in CAN and the talent is getting better, its just a matter of time.

          • MoneyTeam // May 17, 2018 at 12:42 pm //

            100%. That’s why I am suggesting it’s not fair to compare Chapman to all (most?) of these receivers referenced in the post. I didnt go through and check all their schools and where they were born and raised but my suspicion is almost all are CDN and from CIS schools.

        • Cat Fan // May 18, 2018 at 6:33 pm //

          I think you also missed the $$ available for better facilities, extra coaches etc.

          As an example, when Tedford was moved from the BC Lions to be HC of Fresno state – I can recall an article telling fans there wouldn’t be a shortage of funds despite a guaranteed 2017 salary of $1.5 million because the booster group was covering the previous coach’s guaranteed salary.

          With money flowing like this, I would think the facilities are top notch.

          By capacity – there are fifteen stadiums for college teams before the NFL NY Giants. Then another three college team stadiums before the next NFL team, the Green Bay Packers.

          Unless one is at a small US university, there is lots of money flowing. Zero states have the governor as the highest paid employee while twenty eight states have a football coach as the highest paid one.

  14. Maybe the Cats have eyed Chapman as another Chris William’s type receiver. As I recall Chris Williams arrived with little fanfare or expectations and with the Cats he proved to be a godsend punt returner and receiver for the Cats.He is an American you say,but so is Chapmen.

  15. wewert3 // May 16, 2018 at 8:28 pm //

    It’s a matter of perspective. Another way of looking at the matter is the bar for Mark Chapman is low. A good national receiver is rarer than an Canadian interior lineman. That’s why he was drafted so high.

    Besides, football is team game. Receptions is not the only way a receiver can contribute to the offense.

  16. MJ Bandit // May 16, 2018 at 9:01 pm //

    Dorks concluding that Canadian receivers who sit on CFL benches or get sparingly used are somehow “no good” is totally laughable but typical of the clowns on this site – who have no clue about actual on field evidence.

    Sinopoli (along with Coombs for the Argos recently) are just a couple of examples of Canadian receivers with significant playing time recently and they’ve done just fine ( 3 straight 1000 yard seasons by Sinopoli). Meanwhile – CFL deep thinkers now vastly favor any and all import receivers for playing time and trot out mediocres like Bkhari Grant or Hazelton or Khalil Paden or some of the stiffs the Bombers have given chances to.

    Brian Jones and Llevi Noel sit on the Argos bench as receivers but get to play STs; almost nonsensical to believe talents like that or Behar or Vandervoort could not be helping some CFL teams’ receiving corps; Shaq Johnson had a very good CFL season for BC last year when they actually played him; late round draft pick Austin Hartley made 2 big grabs in the Eat semi last year when he got a chance, and Coates had a 100 yard game in the play-offs for the Bummers when he got a chance – must have been a fluke though – right hater/morons? Total dullards can conclude that no stats in no playing time really proves something.

  17. White Horse // May 16, 2018 at 9:17 pm //

    Good post Bandit. Anthony Parker of the Stamps has proven his worth over the last three seasons. Lamar Durant would be next to Sinopoli if he didn’t get injured in the first quarter of the season. I wish Chapman the best of good luck and health in 2018.

    • MJ Bandit // May 16, 2018 at 9:49 pm //

      Durant, Parker (iffy hands at time though) and Brescacin are examples of some good Canadian receiver talent on one CFL team – they could easily start 2 or even 3 in their 5 pack, but not if they favor average or butter finger American receivers (like the guy who fumbled away the GC game).

      Undrafted Jimmy Ralph caught pretty well everything thrown his way when pressed into action for the Argos last season; ditto for Harty with Ottawa = actual on field evidence; just like BC winning a GC with 3 starting Canadian receivers in their 5 pack – Clermont, Thelwell & Paris Jackson – was; clueless dorks don’t get actual on field evidence though and will continue to post their anti-Canadian hater drivel.

      • Ralph caught 26 passes but that is nowhere near the receptions by the Import players.
        He may have caught everything thrown to him but the point again is that there are few Canadian receivers actually catching passes.

  18. In the end, or to sum up, despite the fact there are a number of hard working receivers in the last fifteen years no receiver even Sinopoli comes close to the natural talent of Andy Fantuz to make a team function at a high level by making those difficult catches to help out the quarterback. A TSN study illustrated that Fantuz was the best receiver for a quarterback in Cananda; even outranking American receivers with more catches and more total yardage.Fantuz has knocked open the door of excellence for receiving and hopefully other Canadians will follow.

    • A TSN study?
      The facts speak for themselves, Sinopoli has over 1,000 yard per season for the last 3.
      He is a much better YAC than Fantuz.
      How can you compare a CFL receiver to an NFL receiver? the NFL players need one foot in bounds to make a catch, don’t have the advantage of the wide field or longer endzones and play in two less games per year.
      That doesn’t make sense at all.
      Also Fantuz not nearly as fast as Sinopoli

      • I think you meant to say that an NFL receiver needs TWO FEET in bounds to make a catch.
        Also the NFL receiver doesn’t get a head start on his route, he has to line up with no movement and when the ball is snapped he starts running.
        The CFL receiver has a huge advantage with the running start.
        I agree you can’t do any comparison between receivers.
        Fantuz is retired he ain’t comin back, Sinopoli is the only Canadian receiver with any decent yardage right now.
        What happened to the other great CIS receivers, Vandervoort, Behar ?

        • I don’t believe Fantuz is retired – he is just an unsigned free agent right now – have a hard time believing he will not be signed unless the Ticats retain him in some other well paid capacity.

    • Being 6’4″ and 220 lbs does not hurt either or having hands big enough to hide a basketball in but I really wish he was being re-signed.

    • American receivers playing in Canada were in the Fantuz study;nothing to do with the NFL.

  19. Edward Leslie // May 17, 2018 at 5:02 am //

    All this proves is that Canadians aren’t getting an opportunity to play receiver because the ratio is too low. With just seven Canadian required as starters, teams will have three (maybe four) Offensive linemen, a defensive tackle, a safety, either a linebacker or running back (as the ratio buster) and FINALLY a wideside wide receiver.
    It’s hard to put up all-star type numbers when you get one or two passes thrown in your. direction all
    game long.
    With just seven Canadian starters, it also makes it hard for young players to get pmating time, other than special teams. Teams tend to cling to the same guys year after year. As a result there are few openings.
    I really think that the CFL needs to increase the Canadian ratio, not lower it.
    A 50/50 split woukd be fair. A roster of 46: 23 Canadians/ 23 Americans makes sense. I’d have a minimum of 10 Canadian starters.
    Why give away so many jobs to Americans? They have their own league, the NFL. It provides around 2,000 jobs already. Why do we need to hundreds more spots to them at the expense of Canadian players?

    • LOL – that’s funny, you are going to use the same old “Canadians don’t get a chance argument” ??.
      They are still filling the ratio positions with Canadian receivers, check out the rosters for all the teams.
      The Canadian receivers aren’t producing, they are filling the ratio positions but most can’t do the transiton – last year it was expected that Vandervoort, Behar would be the big producers.
      The last thing we need is more Canadian starters. I don’t think you have been paying attention as to what is going on in Canada. We have fewer kids playing football, fewer high schools have football teams.
      It’s obvious we need FEWER Canadian starters.
      We are talking about pro-sports here NOT the Olympics or our national teams.
      Do you think that Jays, Raptors, TFC fans care that there are few Canadians on their teams?
      TV ratings are higher for the NFL than the CFL, twice as many Canadians watched the Super Bowl than the GC.

  20. Tiger man // May 17, 2018 at 8:17 am //

    It comes with being the number one draft choice.

    That player is supposed to be the best available…therefore ..yes…expectations will be high…

  21. He only has to be better than Mike Jones. That is not a high bar. Jones has burners but drops too many touchdown/1st down catches. He will be the main competition for Chapman. If he makes Jones better, thats a win.

    • MJ Bandit // May 17, 2018 at 10:42 am //

      Jones is a candidate to be cut after showing stone hands last year (mind you – Bkhari Grant calibre import receivers drop pass after pass, year after year and still get handed playing time).

      HC June Jones has already raved about the mini-camp play of last year’s 6th round pick receiver Jacob Scarfone who was a productive receiver at Guelph; Faubert-Lussier is a big body receiver who has some extra utility as a kicker. They’re only going to start one Canadian receiver – likely Chapman unless he bombs in TC or one of the other guys really steps up.

      • MJ Bandit // May 17, 2018 at 10:49 am //

        Forgot to mention Chambers – it will probably be between him and Chapman to start at lesser used wide-side WR spot – with Chambers having the experience to maybe win out for now (he actually looked good in that June Jones offence when he got there last season)

  22. canadianfootballfan // May 17, 2018 at 11:55 am //

    Canadian talent evolves differently at different positions. OL is the only position that has always been reasonably good. WR/SB used to be a strong point, but not so much in the last decade plus. Now it’s more D players.

    Removing the ratio/quota would literally kill football in Canada. It would actually be horrible for the CFL.

    I would have absolutely no interest in following the CFL without it being predominantly Canadian.

    For those who prefer to watch football with a majority of Americans… watch the NFL. Problem solved. If you don’t like watching Canadians play, then the CFL isn’t for you.

    • CFL lover // May 17, 2018 at 12:58 pm //

      Thumbs up on that all the way boss !!

    • MJ Bandit // May 17, 2018 at 2:19 pm //

      Yeah – I agree and there is also tons of US college ball to watch – if you prefer the American game and American players.

      And too late on wanting the CFL to still be “predominantly Canadian” – majority of CFL rosters now are Americans and it’s predominantly Americans who control CFL football decision making (play calling /style & roster decisions).

      If some of the clueless dorks (and obvious soccer trolls) here wanting more & more American content in the Canadian Football League got their way, the league would likely fade away to a lesser minor league than MLS soccer is now. Could happen maybe.

  23. Jim Harvie // May 17, 2018 at 3:21 pm //

    It’s well recognized that most Canadian players need more time. Chapman could have a very successful rookie season and not get anywhere near 1000 yards

    • canadianfootballfan // May 17, 2018 at 5:57 pm //

      I’d be happy with 300-4-500 yards. If he plays enough to get the chance to rack up some rookie yards.

  24. Dundas dude // May 17, 2018 at 5:22 pm //

    Personally, I like CIS football. Although a free trade supporter generally, National quotas in the CFL probably provide more continuity for the league which has a lot of turnover regardless. I think the current rules are a good balance. I’d be happy with Chapman having 60 catches, 1100 yards, 6 tds and a Grey Cup ring in 2018.

    • 60 catches?? considering that only ONE Canadian had over 45 catches last year that would seem a little high.
      A lot of people are going to be disappointed with Chapman if they think he will start in his first year.

      • MJ Bandit // May 18, 2018 at 4:29 pm //

        He won’t get many catches if he gets next to no playing time – I’ll bet on that one.

        IF he does get to play – who knows; Joe Poplawski had 75 catches for 998 yards as a rookie for the Bombers out of U of Alberta back in the late 70s; Jason Clermont had a pretty decent CFL rookie receiving season in BC; these kinds of things can happen with playing time.

  25. Dundas dude // May 18, 2018 at 1:02 pm //

    If I’m gonna dream, I’m gonna dream big.

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