GM O’Day isn’t expecting the Riders to be busy before CFL trading deadline


Wednesday is the final chance for CFL teams to make a trade with their counterparts, but when the deadline hits at 3:00 pm Saskatchewan time, it will probably be a surprise to see the Saskatchewan Roughriders involved in a transaction.

General manager and vice president of football operations, Jeremy O’Day isn’t expecting the Riders to be very active barring something unexpected occurring in the final hours. Before practice on Tuesday he spoke about the possibility of a move happening. He adds that the majority of trade talk between teams is happening throughout the entire year.

“Those discussions happen every year not just because the trade deadline is happening tomorrow, it’s throughout the year both guys on our team and guys on other teams. ”

The Riders general manager explains there usually isn’t a lot of movement at this time of year, even with the deadline looming.

“It’s a small league a lot of the teams are still in the playoff hunt, unless you’re trading starters for starters or guys on the injured reserve there isn’t a lot of fluctuation that goes back and forth, if you’re strong in a certain area then that’s when it usually happens.”

With upstart football leagues already in operation or set to launch in the United States, including the USFL and the XFL, O’Day says it’s getting more difficult to recruit more players north of the border, but he refuses to use it as an excuse since the other teams in the league are facing the same scenario as the Roughriders.

If the Riders make the playoffs this season it will be via the playoff crossover, meaning Saskatchewan will have to beat a pair of eastern teams in the playoffs if they want to reach the Grey Cup. The vice president of football operations for the Roughriders says a trade between teams that they’re competing against is always a possibility, if the deal makes sense for both sides.

“Typically you don’t want to trade a guy that you’re going to be competing with, it just depends on the player that’s being talked about.”

With their current position in the standings along with the Grey Cup being held in his own backyard, O’Day acknowledges there is pressure to succeed in Saskatchewan and he needs no reminder.

“At the end of the day we’re all responsible for having success on the field, I don’t need anyone to tell me that 6-9 is not acceptable for the Saskatchewan Roughriders we’ve been fortunate to have good teams for the last number of years and put ourselves in a position where we can win a championship, we got to continue that, that’s what we’re being evaluated on.”

One position on the Riders roster that O’Day has received plenty of scrutiny this season has been the offensive line. The former centre for the Riders says that they were feeling confident about the 0ffensive line after training camp but the unit has been dealt with several injuries throughout the season and have had a hard time of maintaining continuity. He added it’s very difficult to find quality offensive lineman on the market, especially at this time of year.

“Most of the guys are under contract, most of those guys are in NFL camps, even with NFL cutdown I think everyone thinks there’s going to be an influx of NFL players that leave NFL training camps but the reality is a big variance of coming up to our practice roster compared to getting on a practice roster of the NFL, so a lot of those guys and we’ve talked to them are really just waiting for another chance in the NFL.”

Even though the 2022 season has not come to a close, there has been plenty of chatter about what potentially could be happening this upcoming offseason in Riderville, O’Day says there will come a time to discuss the future but his current focus is for the Riders to make the postseason, as he believes if that happens, anything is possible.

” Our goals have not changed, we’ve gone through a lot of adversity and through some tough challenges and some tough games, we’re still focused on this game against Hamilton and getting us one step closer. ”

Friday’s game can be heard on 620 CKRM with Michael Ball, the opening kickoff is set for 5:30.

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