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This article was published 9/2/2010 (4483 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
The CFL's free agency window opens in less than a week, but all the talk is about hiring coaches.
The Winnipeg Blue Bombers and Toronto Argonauts waited until February before naming head coaches and both of those men, Paul LaPolice in Winnipeg and Jim Barker in Toronto, are scrambling to put together staffs.
LaPolice has offered jobs to a pair of his colleagues from last season's Saskatchewan Roughriders staff -- quarterbacks coach Jamie Barresi and Kavis Reed, special teams co-ordinator and running backs coach.
LaPolice said Tuesday that he'd offered jobs to the two men but would not specify for which positions. It's believed Barresi has been offered the offensive co-ordinator job and Reed the same position on defence.
The Riders have also offered Barresi the offensive co-ordinator post in an attempt to fill the vacancy left by LaPolice when he moved to the Bombers.
"I have offered jobs to those two guys but I don't want to get into the details of organizational structure at this point," said LaPolice.
Barresi came to the CFL in 2004 and spent two seasons as offensive co-ordinator with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats before joining the B.C. Lions as an offensive assistant. He's been with the Riders the last two seasons and last year was the club's quarterback's coach, overseeing the rapid development of Darian Durant.
Barresi played quarterback at the University of Ottawa and honing his coaching craft at Penn State and the University of Florida.
Reed was a star at defensive back with the Edmonton Eskimos has held the defensive co-ordinator position with both the Tiger-Cats and Argos.
At the same time, LaPolice and vice-president of football operations Joe Mack are making final decisions on who to offer contracts when free agency opens on Monday.
One name that has popped up in recent days is Riders backup quarterback Steven Jyles, a fourth-year pivot who has spent the last two seasons in Saskatchewan under LaPolice.
The 27-year-old will be a free agent next week and word is LaPolice will make Jyles an offer but not a bankrollbuster.
The biggest thing the Bombers have to offer is the chance to play.
"I won't comment on another team's player only to say that I put Steven in a group with a bunch of other good young CFL players," said LaPolice.
It's expected the Bombers will bring back quarterbacks Michael Bishop, Stefan LeFors, Casey Bramlet, Ricky Santos and Adam DiMichele.
Another avenue the Bombers are likely to explore is Lions backup Jarious Jackson. The Lions have a glut of experienced quarterbacks and if B.C. elects to keep Buck Pierce, Jackson could be made available.
The Bombers will likely lose non-import defensive tackle Pat McDonald, who is expect to sign with the NFL's Seattle Seahawks, where he will try crack the roster as a long snapper.