Free agent quarterback Chris Streveler is not ruling out a return to the CFL during the 2022 season but intends to take his time exploring NFL opportunities.
The popular former Winnipeg Blue Bomber made a guest appearance on the American Association of Professional Baseball’s Game of the Week broadcast Thursday night, joining play-by-play announcer Carter Woodiel for two innings of action between the Winnipeg Goldeyes and Cleburne Railroaders.
Asked by a viewer if he had “retired” from the Bombers, Streveler addressed his football future following his release from the NFL’s Miami Dolphins on May 18.
“I wouldn’t say I’m retired from the Blue Bombers,” Streveler grinned. “I’m kind of just figuring out what the next move is right now. Still getting some bites from NFL teams, I’ve definitely talked to some CFL teams as well.”
The dynamic dual-threat quarterback originally signed with the Arizona Cardinals following his Grey Cup victory as a member of the Blue Bombers and spent the better part of two seasons serving as the backup to star Kyler Murray. Streveler completed 17-of-25 pass attempts for 141 yards with one touchdown and one interception during his time with the team, adding seven carries for 21 yards on the ground.
The 27-year-old was released by the Cardinals in November and finished the year on the practice roster of the Baltimore Ravens, before signing in Miami this offseason. His release last month has opened the door to a CFL return, but Streveler will exhaust all NFL options first.
“The CFL’s most definitely still on my radar and it’s always been something in the back of my mind since I left,” the quarterback acknowledged. “I’ve got a lot of love for that league and a lot of people up there, but it’s just a matter of what this next move looks like. Like I said, I’m still getting some bites from NFL teams, so we’ll kind of see what gets shaking here in the next couple of weeks.”
The six-foot-two, 216-pound passer completed 65 percent of his passes for 2,698 yards in two seasons with the Blue Bombers, recording 19 touchdowns and 19 interceptions. He also rushed for 1,167 yards and 22 touchdowns, averaging 5.7 yards per carry and was a key part of Winnipeg’s Grey Cup run in 2019.
Streveler is certain to have several CFL suitors, but they are unlikely to be the only ones interested. The fledgling USFL and upstart XFL are beginning to battle for American talent and viable quarterbacks will be valued at a premium.
“I keep track of it. I have some buddies that are playing there right now. Honestly, I think it’s great that there’s a league like that,” Streveler said of the new US spring leagues.
“I mean, I love the CFL but I think to have a minor league in America that’s kind of connected with the NFL would be a great thing for everybody, just to get more opportunities. You’ve got the CFL, you’ve got the USFL and that’s just opportunities for guys to make a name for themselves, get film and get jobs. I’m always a fan and a proponent of more things like that.”
Sentimentality could sway the South Dakota product to return north of the border, but an opportunity to be a starter and a substantial paycheque are the only ways to completely fend off competition from other leagues.
In the meantime, Streveler is planning to head back to his home in Arizona shortly and weigh interest from all suitors.