Unkind words for Eskimos

Antonio Warren's time was up with the Edmonton Eskimos, even before he had a chance to step on the...

Antonio Warren's time was up with the Edmonton Eskimos, even before he had a chance to step on the field. (File Photo)

JONATHAN HUNTINGTON -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 10:34 AM ET

The Edmonton Eskimos didn't have to wait until training camp for emotions to rise.

After officially releasing Antonio Warren, Keyuo Craver and Roosevelt Williams yesterday, at least two members of the departed trio are a little steamed.

"If I wasn't going to make it to training camp I wouldn't even have signed in Edmonton," said Warren, a former running back with the B.C. Lions.

"I'm upset because the main thing is I really didn't have an explanation of why I was released."

While the departure of Williams and Craver was totally expected, Warren's release is somewhat surprising.

Signed as a free agent in November, the 31-year-old import has only worked out for the Eskimos this off-season.

But with Josh Ranek apparently showing well at his workout coupled with the fact the Eskimos have quietly signed another import running back to go along with Ron McClendon, Warren's time was up.

In other words, Edmonton doesn't want four imports sharing the ball at camp.

"There is only three weeks of camp, there is only two preseason games," said head coach Danny Maciocia.

"You have to find out who is your (running) back over a very short period of time."

As for the release of Williams, the Esks believe they are better equipped with new acquisitions Omarr Morgan, Stanford Samuels and Jason Goss.

"When you take a look at what we have back there, he was going to be in tough to try to win a job," stated Maciocia.

But Williams believes there is something else behind his release. "I just figure that the reason they let me go before training camp is because they didn't want no conflict - that I would beat out two or three of those guys they signed," said Williams, referring to the trio of Morgan, Goss and Samuels.

"I'm kind of bitter, man.

"Edmonton is a great city and I thought I was going to be there for a year or two, but I guess they already have their DBs. I guess it is not a competition at training camp."

Craver's fate was sealed the moment he signed with the Arizona Rattlers of the Arena League this off-season, even though he was still under contract to the Green and Gold.

The length of the AFL season means the defensive back will still be playing in the U.S. when Eskimo training camp starts June 2.

"It would make no sense to keep a guy around here that isn't going to come to camp," added Maciocia.


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