Insider Talk: CFL draft steals, one-sided trade, ‘third-rate’ Global kickers

Photo courtesy: Scott Grant/CFLPhotoArchive.com

Insider Talk is a weekly feature on 3DownNation that includes anonymous quotes from people around the CFL — players, coaches, personnel people, executives, agents, etc. — regarding the latest news around the league. It’s a combination of insight, analysis, rumours, and friendly gossip.

This week’s Insider Talk is full of discussion regarding the aftermath of the 2022 CFL Draft, the big trade between Hamilton and Edmonton, the Ford brothers, the parade of kickers in the 2022 Global Draft, some draft-day steals, and the early retirement of Saskatchewan Roughriders’ offensive lineman Mattland Riley.

Enjoy this week’s quotes and come back next week for another edition of Insider Talk.

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Hamilton fleeced Edmonton in that (pre-draft) trade. (Offensive lineman Kyle) Saxelid will probably start at left tackle (for the Ticats) and Grant McDonald was Edmonton’s best special teamer. And they’re both under contract for two more years. That’s a ton of value.

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I’m not surprised at all that (University of Ottawa offensive lineman) Zack Pelehos went that high (to the Redblacks at second overall in the 2022 CFL Draft). He not only has the highest ceiling (of all the offensive linemen selected) but he’s also the most ready to play in Week 1, at least in my opinion. You just can’t teach guys to be that physical.

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I would have taken (Waterloo defensive back) Tyrell Ford over (his twin brother, Waterloo quarterback) Tre Ford. Tyrell is just as athletic as Tre or better, but you know he can play a position whether it’s safety, cornerback or returner. What can Tre do for you if he doesn’t develop as a quarterback? We all assume he could play receiver but that’s just us guessing. He’s never really done it.

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The league’s mandate to attack the (Canadian) ratio while promoting third-rate kickers in the Global draft is confusing. Over a third of the picks were used on kickers! That tells you everything you need to know about the entire program right there.

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I don’t think the Riders were ever taking (University of Saskatchewan offensive lineman Noah) Zerr (in the 2022 CFL Draft). That’s just something everyone connected because he was local and fit their biggest need. I think they were smart to wait until the second and third rounds to take their offensive linemen. If Zerr ends up being good they can always just do what seems to happen with all the Saskatchewan guys and sign him in free agency when his rookie contract is up.

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Two of the best picks (in the 2022 CFL Draft) were the McMaster guys – (linebacker Nate) Edwards (to Edmonton in round eight) and (tight end Chase) Arseneau (to Toronto in round seven). Those guys are going to make your roster and contribute, which is a win when you get to the late rounds.

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One of the best picks in the draft was (Carleton receiver) Keaton Bruggeling (to the Redblacks in the third round). He has great raw tools and will be a really good player in a year or two if he can put it all together.

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(Saskatchewan Roughriders’ offensive lineman Mattland) Riley isn’t the first young player to retire to pursue another career and he won’t be the last. It’s starting to become a real concern for us. I like prospects who do well academically because they generally learn fast, but if they’re in a lucrative program like engineering then they’ve gotta really love football.