Let's make a deal

Eskimos coach Danny Maciocia wouldn't mind trading the second overall pick in the CFL draft. (Sun...

Eskimos coach Danny Maciocia wouldn't mind trading the second overall pick in the CFL draft. (Sun File/Brendon Dlouhy)

JONATHAN HUNTINGTON -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 8:35 AM ET

The top two picks in the CFL college draft are for sale.

The Sun has learned the Hamilton Tiger Cats are shopping their first overall selection for Wednesday's draft, while Edmonton Eskimos head coach Danny Maciocia is willing to part with the No. 2 overall spot.

Neither move is very surprising.

Hamilton is coming off a terrible 4-14 campaign and desperately needs players who can make an impact now. Offering the first overall choice in the draft - along with something else - could bring the Tabbies something of use for the 2007 season.

For his part, Maciocia is never shy about making a big trade.

"Everything is for sale," said the head coach and director of football operations.

Not considered a very deep draft, there isn't a consensus slam-dunk player who will be chosen with the first pick.

There are a handful of players - J.P. Bekasiak, Corey Mace, Mike Gyetvai - who could be in the mix.

While head coaches and general managers keep most of their cards very close to their chest in the days leading to the draft, Maciocia isn't denying the Eskimos' interest in University of Regina receiver Chris Bauman.

"I would say he was in the top two performers at the CFL combine," said Maciocia.

"He caught every ball thrown his way. He runs well. He has got all the tools in the toolbox."

On paper, Edmonton seems to be deep at the Canadian receiver position, but the club isn't going to keep both Pat Woodcock and Kamau Peterson this year for salary reasons.

On top of that, a 6-foot-4, 212-pound highly touted non-import product doesn't come along every day.

Compared to Jason Clermont and Vince Danielsen, Bauman will get plenty of attention on draft day.

However, the Green and Gold are bound to have a few other players quietly in their sights, just like they did last year when they debated whether to take Adam Braidwood or Jason Nugent with the first overall pick.

In the end, the Esks got both players.

Edmonton has two of the first 10 picks this year.

But the club's inner circle of decision makers with the draft - Maciocia, Dan McKinnon (Canadian scouting manager), Paul Jones (director of player personnel) and Ed Hervey (west coast scout) - will really earn their money with the club's other two picks in the fourth round.

Considered a below average year for top-level talent, the Esks are hoping to find some diamonds in the rough.

After starting with a list of 910 players eligible for the draft, the team is now down to a master list of 27 players - as the Esks final pick in the draft is 27th overall.

"We try to identify the best players at their respective position," said Maciocia on the evaluating process by his inner circle.

"Then we will rank them. Then we will give it to the position coach and he will rank (the talent pool at that position). Then we will have a general ranking based on talent and need."


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