As most of the Prairies in Canada sits within the deep freeze of winter, CFL fans are slowly becoming stir crazy prior to the start of CFL Free Agency, which is set to begin at high noon (ET) on February 8th. So yes, I need to be one of those columnists that comes up with some witty article about which players should be the priority for GM Chris Jones to sign. As I sat looking out my frost bitten window, I decided to enlist the help of a great CFL Alumni, Jed Roberts.
I first met Jed in 1999 (I think) when he ventured 327 km north of Edmonton to speak at Mistassiniy School in Wabasca, Alberta where I first started teaching. He came to speak to our students as part of the Edmonton Elks “Stay in School Program.” Aside from locking his keys in his car, Jed demonstrated to our students his character and passion for humanity, education and football. So, who better to help me out with the 2022 Free Agent Draft than CFL Special Teams guru – Jed Roberts. He is a 2nd generation CFLer, the all-time leading special teams tackler in @elks team history and UNC Alumnus.
Fantasy Draft Rules
As a benevolent dictator (aka Commish Darrell) of a pretty darn serious Fantasy Football League, I needed to give Jed some strict boundaries for how we were going to draft our teams.
Rule 1 – We each choose 10 Free Agents that GM Jones should sign.
Rule 2 – Money and the salary cap are no worries for the 2022 Fantasy Elks.
Rule 3 – Must provide a one sentence reason for each pick.
Rule 4 – Jed picks first.
Rule 5 – No doing this draft while you are enjoying the mountains with your wonderful family.
Team Roberts (Grey Cup Champ & Elks Alumni)
Juwan Brescacin (WR – Toronto) – Tough as nails receiver with a ratio-breaking skill-set.
Dexter McCoil (LB – Toronto) – Reunite Dexter with his mentor Chris Jones and watch as he disrupts offensive game plans.
Brandon Banks (KR – Hamilton) – He brings a long dormant return game back to life in Edmonton.
Simoni Lawrence (LB -Hamilton) – Has the best range of any linebacker in the CFL over the past 20 years.
Jeremiah Masoli (QB – Hamilton) – He can beat you with his arm and his legs, and Edmonton wins with him backed by a staunch run game and a stifling defense.
James Wilder Jr (RB – Edmonton) – He shines as a runner when it’s warm in the summer and when its cold in the winter.
Kwaku Boateng (DE- Edmonton) – He is a ratio busting defensive end who is a must to re-sign in Edmonton.
Matt O’Donnell (OL – Edmonton) – He is the leader of the Offensive line and room in Edmonton.
Justin Lawrence (OL – Calgary) – Hometown kid who provides depth for the interior line.
Team Paquette (Former Back-up High School QB)
Bear Woods (LB – Toronto) – Price will be right, plus come on…the Elks need a LB with a super cool name.
Kenny Lawler (WR – Winnipeg) – CFL’s #1 WR in 2021 who will give Arbuckle (or Collaros) some fresh options for the re-vamped Elks offence.
Ka’Deem Carey (RB – Calgary) – I can’t choose Wilder Jr, so I might as well punish the Stampeders by stealing this up and coming CFL bruiser.
Stanley Bryant (OL – Winnipeg) – 2021 Offensive Lineman of the year, the Elks need to improve in the trenches.
Monshadrik “Money” Hunter (DB – Montreal) – A young and entertaining ball hawk who is good for a few key interceptions each year.
Alexandre Gagné (FB – Montreal) – Canadian with 18 special teams tackles in 2021.
Frankie Williams (DB/KR – Hamilton) – Fast, flexible and could add a serious boost to the Elks return game.
Kerfalla-Emmanuel Exumé (DB – Montreal) – Canadian special teams specialist (Note: I can’t believe Jed didn’t draft any Canadian special teams tacklers).
Adam Bighill (LB – Winnipeg) – Sorry Bombers fans, he took a 145k pay cut last year, time is ticking on this star to cash in on a big contract with the Green & Gold.
Life is Hard as a CFL GM
Time will tell as the clock ticks down to the 2022 CFL Free Agent frenzy. I’m sure CFL fans from across the planet await with baited breath until training camps open in May. Good luck Team Roberts, good luck Chris Jones, this has truly been an exciting CFL off-season to date!