The Calgary Stampeders signed quarterback Jake Maier to a two-year contract extension on Tuesday, giving him an off-season roster bonus worth over $200,000 as part of a deal that will pay him over $400,000 in hard money for next season.
The extension makes it clear that Calgary views Maier to be their quarterback of the future, leaving eleven-year veteran and pending free agent Bo Levi Mitchell without a home for 2023. The two-time CFL Most Outstanding Player addressed the issue head-on ahead of the league’s trade deadline set for Wednesday, Oct. 5.
“I haven’t asked for [a trade]. I have talked to [head coach] Dave [Dickenson] and [president and general manager John Hufnagel] about it. I know there’s been phone calls and whatnot but for me, I don’t get to control that. I’ll listen to all options, I’ll keep in constant communication with Huf and Dave on those things. Until something happens I’m just going to keep preparing to play,” Mitchell told the media in Calgary.
Mitchell indicated that he was aware the team was working on a contract extension with Maier as the two quarterbacks are in “constant communication.” He remains committed to helping the club succeed and expects to be on Calgary’s roster for the rest of the season barring a sudden turn of events.
“I assume so, that’s my thought right now, so unless something drastic happens to change that, then yeah,” said Mitchell. “I gotta continue to do what I gotta do out there. I get paid to help this team win football games and I’ll continue to try to do that until I’m not on this roster.”
Dickenson was complimentary of Mitchell and how he’s handled the backup role since being benched in late August. He also cautioned against looking too far ahead into the future and what Maier’s extension means for Mitchell and the team.
“He shows up to work, he shows up early, puts the time in. He’s prepared, he’s ready to win — all the things that Bo does whether he’s the starter, backup, or third-string,” said Dickenson. “As soon as you get in that business of predicting the future, you probably shouldn’t be in the CFL. Maybe go to Wall Street or try another job. If you know what the future is, feel free to let me know.”
Mitchell recently surpassed Canadian Football Hall of Fame quarterback Henry Burris to become Calgary’s all-time passing yardage leader. He started the team’s first nine games of the season and led them to a 6-3 start, completing 61 percent of his passes for 2,010 yards, nine touchdowns, and six interceptions.
Now 9-5, the Stampeders sit a half-game back of the B.C. Lions (9-4) for second place in the West Division with five weeks remaining on the CFL’s regular season schedule. The team has clinched a playoff spot and is well in contention to potentially host a postseason game in November.