May 1, 2012
Mocking up the CFL Draft
By Ian Busby, QMI AGENCY
Our own CFL experts at QMI Agency have put together what they think could play out at Thursday’s CFL Draft. The Calgary’s Sun Ian Busby was part of the group, and here’s a look at the predictions for the first two rounds Thursday.
1. Saskatchewan — Ben Heenan, OL, Saskatchewan
The Riders were listening to offers for the top pick, but there were asking for a large haul in return. There was a good reason GM Brendan Taman could do that. By adding Brenden LaBatte and Dominic Picard through free-agency, they don’t really need Heenan, but they are getting pressure to pick the local product.
2. Edmonton (via trade with Tor) — Shamawd Chambers, R, Wilfrid Laurier
After dropping their pursuit of the top pick and Ben Heenan, the Eskimos turn to Chambers, who is a big-time playmaker. Chambers has a workout with the Philadelphia Eagles, but he could be an impact player immediately. The Eskimos have plenty of receivers, but no high-end Canadians, which should make the Markham, Ont., native a good choice.
3. Hamilton — Kirby Fabien, OL, Calgary
The Ticats lost Simeon Rottier to free agency and will be looking for some help at their offensive-line position. They need it now, not later, so we’re expecting a surprise at this pick. Fabien played right tackle for the Dinos, and he could be a long-term solution for the Ticats at the spot previously held by an import.
4. B.C. (via trade with Mtl) — Austin Pasztor, OL, Virginia
Wally Buono is never afraid to play the waiting game, and Pasztor is the type of talent worth sticking around for. The Langton, Ont., product has signed a free-agent deal with the Minnesota Vikings but the defending Grey Cup champions can afford to be patient. The Lions have a solid offensive line but could use upgrades, especially if they ever plan on using less than two imports.
5. Calgary — Jabar Westerman, DL, Eastern Michigan
The Stamps are looking for depth at defensive line and will be torn between Westerman and Ameet Paul. Just a hunch they go with Westerman, whose stock has risen over the past couple of months. With Corey Mace and Brian Bulcke projected as starting tackles, the Stamps could use a player like Westerman in a rotation.
6. Edmonton — Frederic Plesius, LB, Laval
The versatile defender might be the best athlete in this draft class and he will give the Eskimos the option of playing a Canadian at linebacker. He is capable of big plays, as his TD in the Vanier Cup can attest. At worst, the Rouge et Or product will be a valuable member of the special teams units.
7. Forfeited by Winnipeg (Kito Poblah supplemental draft)
8. B.C. — Ameet Paul, DL, Wofford
With their second pick in the first round, the Lions get a player to help right now, and they will target a defensive lineman. The retirement of Brent Johnson has created a big hole there, and Paul should fit the bill. If the Stamps take Paul instead, they will be more than happy with Westerman.
9. Winnipeg via Sask — Simon Charbonneau-Campeau, R, Sherbrooke
The Bombers expect to start two non-import receivers, and they need some capable backups.
10. Toronto — Matt Norman, OL, Western
First pick for the Argos and they could use some depth help along the offensive line.
11. Hamilton — Jason Medeiros, OL, McMaster
The Ticats should know all about one of the anchors of McMaster’s Vanier Cup winning offence.
12. Montreal — Tyrone Crawford, DE, Boise State
Jim Popp never shies away from players who may never make it to the CFL.
13. Calgary — Carson Rockhill, OL, Calgary
Local product will give the Stamps some depth and they could easily send him back to university.
14. Forfeited by Edmonton (Ted Laurent supplemental draft)
15. Winnipeg — Justin Capicciotti, DL, Simon Fraser
The Bombers are trying to replace Doug Brown at defensive tackle. Good luck.
16. B.C. — Bo Adebayo, DE, Western Kentucky
A late addition to the draft, Adebayo is an intriguing prospect after getting passed over in the NFL.