February 16, 2012
Argos ink back-up QB, receiver
By FRANK ZICARELLI ,QMI Agency
Turns out Jarious Jackson wasnít the veteran quarterback the Argos were eyeing.
As things worked out, the guy most likely to backup incumbent Ricky Ray is former Hamilton Ticats third-stringer Adam Tafralis, who is certainly younger and more mobile than Jackson.
Released by the B.C. Lions last month, an obvious destination for Jackson would appear to be Saskatchewan, which added plenty of Canadian talent on the offensive line in the first two days of free agency to protect Darian Durant.
Tafralis will likely have to compete for the backup job at camp, but his experience, even if it is limited, canít hurt.
And with so much money tied up in Ray, it was next to impossible for the Argos to bring in a high-priced backup.
On the same day the Argos announced the signing of Tafralis, the club also announced that import wide receiver Dontrelle Inman had agreed to terms.
One CFL scout described Inman as an intriguing prospect who spent time with the Jacksonville Jaguars in the NFL.
Until he reports to camp and dresses for a game, itís anyoneís guess how Inman will react to three-down football. The Argos are committed to surrounding Ray with playmakers and you just know GM Jim Barker will leave no stone unturned in his pursuit to accomplish that end.
Even with the departure of Dominic Picard, who signed with Saskatchewan, and veterans Rob Murphy and Taylor Robertson said to be on their way to Hamilton, the Argos havenít sacrificed much on their offensive line.
A lot will depend on the offence rookie head coach Scott Milanovich runs, but on paper the Argos have some emerging pieces on the offensive line who wonít exactly make a huge dent on the bottom line.
Cedric Gagne-Marcoux, Chris Van Zeyl bring experience and familiarity, while Marc Parenteau, who was obtained days following his release from Saskatchewan essentially takes the spot left by Picard.
Joe Eppele gained valuable experience last year and Edawn Coughman held his own at left tackle when Murphy was sidelined.
The team also recently signed Donnie McKenzie out of Laurier, while waiting in the wings is Tyler Holmes, whom the Argos traded into the first round last year to get their hands on this red-shirt tackle out of Tulsa.
One area that needs an upgrade is on defence, where Byron Parker will no longer be featured following his expected free-agent move to B.C.
With the Lions, Parker will be re-united with defensive co-ordinator Rich Stubler and former Argos teammates Lin-J Shell, whom B.C. acquired after Toronto released its starting halfback.
Veteran Jordan Younger is expected to anchor the Argosí defensive backfield at safety, a position he auditioned late last season when Toronto was basically looking ahead to this year.
For Younger, playing free safety will be his third position having moved from corner to linebacker two years ago.
Itís not known what fate awaits Willie Pile, but if the Argos canít come to terms with Pile, a strong-side linebacker (SAM) must be acquired.