The NFL’s loss is the CFL’s gain.
Or, at least, it could be.
That’s why the Edmonton Eskimos have their collective eye on the situation involving the labour dispute in the league to the south that could result in gridiron gridlock in the upcoming season.
“We have to, I think it’s only prudent that we monitor the situation down there because it does affect our league,” said Eskimos head coach Kavis Reed. “It may affect free agents being able to go down to the NFL from Canadian free agency. We may not have the influx of guys that are able to leave, given the labour dispute that’s going on down there.
“It’s a peripheral monitoring, not a key monitoring.”
Meaning it won’t make or break the Eskimos’ upcoming season, but at the same time they wouldn’t say no to potential talent that could lead to improvement in a given area.
“It’s a bonus. (General manager) Eric (Tillman) has been very smart about the way we’ve been putting together this roster,” Reed said. “We pretty much have a roster plan and it’s not going to sway too much but it is wise to keep an eye on the personnel down south.”
With the NFL situation in their peripheral vision, the Eskimos have both eyes squarely focused on the CFL draft, which is set for May 8, as they work towards finalizing their roster for June’s training camp.
“There are obviously going to be a lot of moves, the draft is going to dictate a lot of things. We’re continually formulating a plan with that,” Reed said. “The biggest thing is we are following the road map we set out in December. We’re on target with that, it’s been a process that has been very nerve-racking at times, but we are on target with our plan.”