Edmonton Elks put veteran quarterback Trevor Harris on trade block

The Edmonton Elks have put veteran quarterback Trevor Harris on the trade block, per sources.

That’s the main reason why Harris was left off the green and gold roster for Week 11 — keeping the potential asset healthy if a deal comes together. General manager Brock Sunderland has communicated with Harris who is aware of what’s going on behind the scenes. The CFL trade deadline has been set for Wednesday, October 27 at 5 p.m. ET.

There has been dialogue between the Elks and Montreal Alouettes following Vernon Adams Jr. breaking a bone in his left shoulder that could end his 2021 season. The Als are 4-4 second place in the East Division with a spot in the Grey Cup there for the taking. The best seasons in terms of individual production for Harris came while playing in the East.

Whether it be Montreal or another franchise potentially trading for Harris, the added bonus with acquiring him is the fact that he currently has another year left on his contract which runs through next season. Harris is scheduled for a $300,000 roster bonus on February 1, 2022 as part of his $550,000 compensation for next year — if needed the agreement can be renegotiated in various ways with a new team.

Harris being made available on the trade market is a stark contrast to Edmonton anointing him the franchise QB in February 2019 when the Elks signed him to a $1.1 million dollar deal. Sunderland used his connection with Harris in Ottawa to bring No. 7 to the Alberta Capital. The GM and head coach Jaime Elizondo boasted about the familiarity between the three men prior to taking the field in 2021.

The now 35-year-old Harris started 13 games in his first year with Edmonton, completing 343-of-478 passes (71.8 percent) for 4,027 yards with 16 touchdowns and six interceptions. He also added 48 rushes for 139 yards with six touchdowns. In the East Semi-Final, Harris set CFL playoff records for consecutive completions with 22 and completion percentage 92.3 percent.

That highly productive season came alongside Jason Maas who was fired by Sunderland after the EE Football Team went 8-10 and lost in the East Final. Scott Milanovich was his replacement but after the 2020 season was cancelled he was offered and accepted a job with the Indianapolis Colts as quarterbacks coach. That led to Sunderland hiring Elizondo who has failed to live up to high expectations as a rookie head coach — the Elks are 2-6, last place in the West Division.

The culture in Edmonton has not been player friendly according to sources and there are multiple players pointing to the handling of Harris as an example. Elizondo has benched Harris multiple times and his latest move was to elevate rookie Taylor Cornelius into the starting roll. Sunderland would have to be on board with a major move such as switching quarterbacks.

That said, giving up on Harris within what’s been described by sources as a “toxic environment” is an indictment on Sunderland who championed the team as a Grey Cup contender with him as the face of the franchise mere months ago. If Harris is traded, the price could provide important context to the spiralling out of control season in Edmonton.

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