Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION
Posted: 04/29/2013 12:51 PM | Comments: 0
Winnipeg Blue Bombers general manager Joe Mack is staying mum on what -- if any -- interest his team might have in aquiring the CFL rights to former New York Jets quarterback Tim Tebow.
"He’s on somebody else’s neg list," Mack said Monday morning, "and I can’t really comment on somebody who’s on someone else’s neg list."
The quirky Tebow -- who had success in Denver in 2011 despite a very unconventional passing style -- was released by the Jets this morning after a washout season in 2012 and there’s already been wide speculation that Tebow’s time has run out in the NFL and his next logical move would be to try the CFL.
The Bombers could use all the help they can get to solve both their long and short term quarterbacking issues, but the Montreal Alouettes have the CFL negotiating rights for Tebow and Als general manager Jim Popp told TSN this morning that he’d be interested in Tebow as a backup to Als starter Anthony Calvillo if Tebow is interested.
"If Tim Tebow wants to come to Canada, we would take a look at him," Popp told the network’s David Naylor. "He can learn from the best (Calvillo)... One day he might be the guy. That’s our vision."
Calvillo, a certain hall of famer, is in the twilight of his career at age 40.
Tebow piqued some CFL interest last week when the Edmonton Sun reported that Tebow dropped by to watch the Edmonton Eskimos workout during a mini-camp the club held in Bradenton, Florida earlier this month.
There have already been some comparisons to Tebow and former CFL QB Doug Flutie, who also struggled to find traction in the NFL before coming north and having a hall of fame career.
The big difference between the two men, however, is arm strength. Flutie could fire strikes to all parts of the wider and long CFL field, while Tebow’s accuracy dropped off dramatically when he threw anything other than short passes in the NFL or college.
Meanwhile, Mack said Monday that his team will hold meetings today to discuss the impact of three of the top five prospects in next Monday’s CFL draft signing contracts with NFL teams over the weekend.
"We were prepared for this. We definitely thought something like this could happen," said Mack, whose club has the second overall pick after Hamilton in this year’s CFL draft.
"This is just something we have to deal with in the CFL now in general. It’s definitely a challenge... It’s becoming a bigger and bigger issue every year for us.
"There’s not an easy answer right now," said Mack. "It’s just the reality. I think the NFL is doing a lot better job scouting the Canadian kids."
Defensive linemen Stefan Charles and Andy Mulumba, as well as offensive lineman Matt Sewell all signed free agent NFL deals over the weekend after they went undrafted in the NFL draft.
Charles was the second-ranked player in the upcoming CFL draft, while Sewell was fourth and Mulumba was fifth.
With the top CFL prospect -- Oregon linebacker Bo Lokombo -- expected to attract lots of NFL interest in 2014 after he finishes his upcoming senior year at Oregon, that leaves just third ranked Linden Gaydosh among the top 5 CFL prospects available and without confirmed NFL interest heading into next week’s CFL draft.
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