the north face size Heath and Leggett will be tall order for Bombers
Winnipeg Blue Bombers general manager Kyle Walters admits it going to be difficult for the team to re sign its three most impactful defensive players, who can all become CFL free agents in a month. Heath are all unsigned and there certainly a chance at least one of them is going to hit free agency on Feb. 13.
going to be difficult. We in negotiations, we having discussions for sure. It going slow right now but we have until the middle of February, so we see if we can or can make it work. That just one of the challenges of the job and one of the challenges of becoming a better football team. Obviously if you better on the field, the players are better and the better players are going to demand higher salaries. who plays cornerback, and Heath, a halfback, were both CFL all stars in 2017. Both players had five interceptions last season and a touchdown apiece.
Rob Fry, the agent for both Heath and Randle, respectfully declined comment.
Leggett was having an all star calibre season when he suffered a torn Achilles tendon in Week 17. He was named the Bombers top defensive player in 2016.
While the Bombers were not an outstanding defensive team in 2017, the strong side of the field, the boundary side, was formidable and all three of those players play on that side.
Another impact defensive player non import defensive end Jamaal Westerman remains unsigned.
Among the players the Bombers have re signed are offensive linemen Stanley Bryant (the CFL most outstanding lineman in 2017), Jermarcus Hardrick, Paddy Neufeld and Manase Foketi, receiver Weston Dressler,
kicker Justin Medlock, defensive tackle Drake Nevis and weak side linebacker Ian Wild.
certainly focused on the offensive side of the ball, particularly on the offensive line and we were able to get the majority of that crew locked up, Walters said. Weston back was big and Justin Medlock back was big. Now the big one is those defensive backs. certainly sounds like Walters is working on a backup plan which includes dipping into the free agent pool on Feb. 13 in case he can make things work with the coveted defensive backs.
had discussions and unfortunately with the salary cap only going up $50,000, that goes quick, Walters said. a matter of now figuring out financially, and with a hard salary cap, how do you make all this work? That what we trying to sort through. If you can make it work, what Plan B, what Plan C? And that where you come into potentially free agency or looking at your scouting department. the free agency front, Walters made it clear the Bombers want to make improvements from the team that finished 12 6 last year but lost at home to the Edmonton Eskimos in their only playoff game.
become a competitive football team over the last couple years but we haven won any playoff games so we clearly need to tweak things, Walters said. status quo I don think is the right plan.
want to keep as much of the core together as we can but plain and simple we were not good enough. Offensively, we need to score more touchdowns next year and defensively we just gave up too many big, big plays and it as simple as that. For us to win Grey Cups, we need to correct this and we need to figure out the right guys that can fit in and make us a better football team. Bombers biggest needs for next season are at middle linebacker and receiver.