Training Camp Cuts 4.0

The Decisions Begin

The Eskimos released seven players this morning in a start to get down to their final numbers.

Floyd Haigler, QB.

Not a surprise. Haigler was essentially an extra camp arm who was brought in specifically for training camp. He never demonstrated that he was close to being at the same level as the other three quarterbacks. It was an experience for the young quarterback, and hopefully he gets a shot somewhere else in professional football.

Ramonce Taylor, RB.

When Daniel Libre was brought into camp last week, it showed that the Eskimos might have questions about Taylor’s ability to Arkee Whitlock’s backup. Given the play of non-imports Calvin McCarty and Pascal Fils, the Eskimos could be looking at having Whitlock as the only import running back on the roster if they think that the two Canadians are better than Libre.

Kelton Tindall, WR.

Tindall was in tough to make the lineup from the start of camp. The Eskimos were just too deep with players who had CFL experience for a raw rookie to crack this roster.

Jabari Ferguson, OL.

Every year its the same story. Import offensive linemen are brought in to camp, and then they are released. The offensive line pretty much a non-import dominated position in the CFL, with each team only carrying a couple of imports. Ferguson was down the depth chart behind incumbent Calvin Armstrong and Jeremy Parquet, not to mention that he was pencilled in as a guard instead of a tackle.

Anthony Maddox, DL

Prior to training camp, Maddox looked to have a resume that would allow him to not only compete for a roster spot, but also a spot in the starting lineup. He did spend four years in the NFL, however, it looked like he never got a feel for the Canadian game, which led to his release.

Larry Birdine, DE.

Only one of either Larry Birdine or Kenneth Pettway were going to make the Eskimos roster. Birdine didn’t have a bad pre-season, recording three tackles and one sack in the two games. It looks like he just didn’t show enough to the coaching staff to keep him around.

Gemera Williams, DB.

With all the new talent that the Eskimos brought in during the off-season, it was going to be difficult for Williams to survive training camp. The coaches are looking for playmakers and not being able to come up with a timely big play in the pre-season probably sealed Williams fate. He could catch somewhere else in the CFL, so don’t be surprised if you continue to hear his name, it just won’t be with the Eskimos in the immediate future.

What does that mean for the roster?

Not a whole lot. All seven players were imports, so the Eskimos now have 32 imports on the roster looking to fill 19 spots on the active roster and up to four places on the reserve list. The release of Haigler finalizes the quarterback position for the Eskimos, although no one was really expecting the young quarterback to dislodge either Jason Maas or Jared Zabransky as Ricky Ray’s backups.

The moves bring the Eskimos roster down to 67 players, so decisions still have to be made, and they will only get more difficult to make in the coming days.

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