CFLPA executive director Brian Ramsay: ‘playing in 2021 has to be a certainty’

Photo courtesy: CFLPA

CFL Players’ Association executive director Brian Ramsay doesn’t view playing football in 2021 as an open ended question.

Ramsay has a definitive answer.

“Playing the game in 2021 can’t be a variable. It has to be a certainty,” Ramsay told Postmedia reporter Dan Barnes.

“Speaking on behalf of the players, we wanted to play football in 2020.”

After the league-specific financial package was denied by the Canadian federal government, the CFL cancelled its 2020 season when commissioner Randy Ambrosie and the board of governors voted not to play. There have been no guarantees from the league office regarding returning to the field in 2021.

“I think what the membership desires is to see a viable CFL. We want to know as we continue to prepare, that there is viability to the industry,” Ramsay said.

Ambrosie admitted in May during a presentation to the standing committee on finance that teams lose collectively between $10 and $20 million per season. Those figures were prior to the COVID-19 pandemic coming to Canada. Ramsay wants the league to improve its business and increase revenues.

“If those conversations are going to increase the viability of that happening so we don’t end up in the position we’re in right now, then yes, those are conversations that need to happen,” Ramsay said.

“That’s the variable part. We understand the variables that the pandemic has put forward.”

According to Ramsay, what’s not variable is putting the product on the field and playing Canadian football in 2021.