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Tuesday, January 5, 2016

MURPHY ON BUILDING THE ROUGHRIDERS

Saskatchewan Roughriders Assistant V.P. of Player Personnel John Murphy appeared on 620 CKRM's SportsCage on Monday to update fans on where the club is as it builds toward the 2016 season.  Here's the transcript of his comments.

ARE YOU CLOSE ON SOME PLAYER ANNOUNCEMENTS?

JM:  Ya.  I think it's interesting -- there's a lot of guys getting a lot of opportunities down south (NFL), probably more than a lot of teams expected.  I think you're seeing that variable be thrown in there and teams are deciding where they're going to spend their money.  I see Zack Evans got a good deal done in Ottawa and got some good money there so is there still some money there for Justin Capicciotti, J'Michael Deane and guys like that?  I think all teams are making decisions internally about what's going to happen in the coming weeks with their own guys first, and then free agency in a month's time.

Free agency is going to be an exciting time because I think the salary cap is a lot tighter than last year, in terms of $50,000 up from last year.  A lot of teams are going to have to be creative in terms of if you want to add a piece, you might have to delete one.  I think this year's CFL free agency is going to be a lot closer to NFL free agency where you'll have a Wave 1, and then there will be some guys let go that will create the second wave of free agency.  I think it'll be a very interesting time in the market place, like veteran players that'll be a little more worried from city to city about whether they'll be in their team's plans because like I said, if you're going to add a piece here, I think it'll cost you a piece there and it might be a guy you just signed a year before.

HOW HAVE ONE-YEAR DEALS AFFECTED THINGS?

JM:  What it does is you have to find what guys are thinking beyond just football, and for guys in their early- to mid-20's, are they married, are they single?  What's their work status?  What do they do in the off-season? Maybe you have to look at recruiting guys back out west or recruiting guys that are connected to a teammate or someone who's in your building that you can make it attractice to sign better than a one-year deal.  On the back end, the only thing that's guaranteed in the contract of a CFL player is if you're guaranteed off-season money, you're putting yourself in a great position as a player but as a team you're putting yourself a bit in harm's way.

With the new staff and the roster moves that we've made initially and creating roster space, maybe we can initially sign a guy to a one-year deal, that allows him to come in, be impressed by the organization and impress us as a player, and then maybe come back the next year and go for that long-term deal.  I think maybe that'll be one area where we'll try to be more flexible in this dynamic in free agency.  The Riders have dealt with this and I think a lot of teams are sitting with some players where perhaps they're enjoying their talents, but are not enjoying their contracts.

WHAT POSITIONS ARE YOU TARGETING IN FREE AGENCY?

JM:  If I answered that question, I might be asking you for a job.  Are we gonna be active?  Yes.  Of course.  I'm somebody who likes to be active and say 'the Riders are open for business 24/7, 365' because that's the business that we're in.  If there's a player at every position from quarterback to special teams, that fits what we're doing, who wants to be a Rider, who's bringing us good character and the ability to win more games, then we're going to take every opportunity to interview and talk to players.  Will we say a certain number of players?  No, because it's quality over quantity.  That's why I'm saying on February 9 people want names and want instant change on paper, but I'll say we're going to be a team that we'll look at free agency and minicamps and it'll evolve between now and training camp.

WHAT'S KEEPING YOU BUSY NOW?

JM:  A lot of things.  We found a guy that we liked in the waiver draft that we'll be announcing in the next couple of days, who I really have good hopes for in terms of what he can do and compete in training camp.  We've been looking at young quarterbacks and you guys mentioned one on the air earlier (Oklahoma's Baker Mayfield) and he had a good performance in a losing effort but I think if he ever made his way to the CFL would be highly competitive.

We're dealing with free agency and the draft at the same time and having that #1 pick puts us in a peak position but one that we don't care to be in again anytime soon.  We're evaluating the the high-end of the draft and know that we have five picks in the first 35 or 36 selections.  And just getting used to new staff.  I have a great relationship with Craig Reynolds and just getting into the flow of the personnel staff so we can all be on the same page with each other.

We have three or four camps between now and the end of the month and then at the Senior Bowl we'll collect all of the people who will potentially scout for the Roughriders in 2016 and meet at the Senior Bowl and introduce them to our staff.  We'll have a scouting seminar down there and make our decisions who's going to be 100% on board and then have an announcement of that right around free agency.  It'll be very different.  Not good or bad, but we're into the idea of casting a big net and maybe catching fish from different areas and having guys with CFL, Arena League, Indoor League and Junior College experience so that'll open up possibilities for Chris Jones, Jeremy and myself to evaluate and have access to many more players than we've had in the past.

38 comments:

Anonymous said...


"We have three or four camps between now and the end of the month"

So let see - camps by the end of January when all of the good players are still on the NFL rosters or on their PR and the collage players aren't available yet

So that leaves the players that no one has been interested in for the last year
Makes alot of sense for Jones and Murphy
WOW how stupid can they get.
and this is what we have to look forward to until they are fired

Its going to be a long season !!!!!!

Anonymous said...

The more that I listen to Murphy the more I realize that he just spouts off a bunch of BS and hot air and hopes no one notices that he has no idea what he is talking about

Anonymous said...

That's sure a lot better than the old GM with his patented Alfred E. Newman "What, me worry?" attitude.

Go Riders Go.

Mike said...

John Murphy is fantastic to listen to and I hope you have him on the show on a regular basis through the year. So happy we have the best personnel guy in the league on out side.

Anonymous said...

First two posters are Negative Nellies likely are not Rider Fans but like to come on this blog to pretend they are. To poster #1 I say what would you say if they declined to have these mini camps? You would cry the Riders are not doing anything. To Poster #2 I say did you actually read what Murphy had to say? IMO he clearly stated what the Riders are about to do, the changes he would like and the direction they want to take. What morons.

Anonymous said...

Good lord are so many Rider fans ever stupid. The complaining about Jones and Murphy in the comment section of this blog is relentless. Talk about clueless know nothings. Jones and Murphy know what they're doing.

Anonymous said...

Man the Old Boys Club just won't give up! They're going to make life hell as much as they can for the new administration until they get fed up and leave. Just so one of their own can take the reigns and they're back in control.

Beat it guys. We have a new regime and if you don't like it, there's plenty of people who will fill your spot on the bandwagon.

Anonymous said...

Greatest coverage in the CFL.

Anonymous said...

Murphy is a great hire he knows what hes doing. Just sounds smart. Beats the hell out of the previous GM.

Anonymous said...

Apparently posters 1 and 2 have limited ability to absorb information. They just read/hear what serves their stupid opinions best. Based on there comments besides being idiots they have no football knowledge. There are more good football players out there than just NFL rosters, typical wannabe mind set.

GeorgesB said...

Easiest way to get rid of the Negative 'Fans', is to require posters on this blog to register in order to leave a comment. Have your username/alias or whatever, but the administrators will know your real identity & will have the authority to sanction users for rude/abusive behavior.
Easy to throw mud when hiding behind the anon label. Make it tougher to hop on and run down whatever/whomever is in the news, and a lot of this nonsense will go away.

#GoRidersGo

Anonymous said...

Hopson is just bitter because he sees Rider Nation falling in love with actual good football people who will bring this team success and that'll expose how weak his leadership and administration really was. In fact it already has. Lots of scouts? Camps all over the south? Kind of a no-brainer except in an administration where one guy had to be judge jury and executioner. Plus get all the credit and none of the blame. Here we have Jones who has no problem with Murphy having autonomy and getting credit for things.

Sask was like that DirectTV commercial, we were settlers and settled for what we thought was the best. Now we actually have the best and see how good things can be (and how crappy they were. Murphy even said it on air how crappy things were and no doubt that pissed off Hopson incredibly).

Why don't the good people of Bulyea put their money towards a good football speaker like Murphy instead? Hopson's will no doubt be good for a trip to the can and the bar and outside for a smoke.


Speaker Ryan

Anonymous said...

Wow. U gotta love it when a man has a plan like that. I'm so excited with this new football operations group. #IsitJuneyet

Anonymous said...

Pity the poor peons 1 and 2 with comment above, existing only to waste breath. There's a new sheriff in town, Chris... Chris Jones the name, representing Saskatchewan Roughriders Football.

Anonymous said...

GeorgesB is right Rod. That'll put a stop to all the BS (if you want it to)!

Anonymous said...

Posters 1 and 2 are right on.
Amasing that you people do not see how useless Murphy is There is a reason no other team would hire him accept his buddy Jones and Calgary would not promote him. He was only a paper pusher and did not find any players He has never played any serious football himself and so has no knowlwdge of the game or players.

He was only hired because he is a friend = hoe useless.

Anonymous said...

Cole Hufnagel spent the past nine seasons in various roles with the NFL's New York Jets. He most recently held the position of college area scout for western United States.

This is why Stamps have been and are better than the Riders. All the Riders get is what, a nothing.

Anonymous said...

Seems most poster here are only happy if everyone is stating how great every move the Riders make is.
Get real and think for yourself. You are the same people who thought that CC was so great.

POSTERS 1 and @ ARE RIGHT ON whether you like it or not

Anonymous said...

I'm all for registering in order to make comments, the Negative Neds and Nellies can still remain anusonymous by using an alias. Entering the new year a top ten list could be submitted and voted on.
Category 1 Stupid comment of the Year
Category 2 Hater of the Year
Visitors to the blog could vote and the winners email and Facebook page would be made public.An appearance on the Sports Cage would follow for the winner in each category.

Marty

Anonymous said...

Man am I excited for next year. Ignore anon 1 and 2. Same person. Riders are in good hands.

Anonymous said...

"when all of the good players are still on the NFL rosters" Do you think any player on an NFL roster in January would be looking to go to CFL open tryout or free agent camp anyways?

And how many college teams are still playing right now?

You just lost every ounce of credibility in your comments and anyone that agrees with you. Hilarious!

Anonymous said...

Riders are in good hands

Yeah, right You said that when CC was in charge as well and how did that work out ????

Anonymous said...

Seems that posters on this site are only happy if everyone is bragging on how great the riders are

Well not all rider fans think that Jones and Murphy were good hires so get used to it

Anonymous said...

It's going to be a long season for the frowning clowns looking in from the outside as the Roughriders destroy all pretenders to the Grey Cup Championship. A very long season indeed.

Anonymous said...

No one know how this will turn out with Jones and company, but I feel we have a better chance with them then we would have had with the other option. More in likely would have ended up LAPolice as head coach with Oday as GM. That would have been a disaster.

Anonymous said...

Ok Hopson, we know you're pissed that your man JO didn't get hired and that you're cut out of the loop. Too damn bad.

Anonymous said...

LAPolice as head coach with Oday as GM

Well some think that would have been a much much better hire. I agree.

Anonymous said...

Only the members of the old boys club and O'Day's local regina buddies wanted him to get the job... everyone else wanted Jones and/or Murphy. We got both... we've assembled a dream team of executives and coaches. If you can't see that then just stop watching football.

Anonymous said...

Sorry they didn't keep with the status quo and hire your buddy O'Day. We all know he's a complete genius... I mean I'm sure he's sold tones of real estate in Regina solely because of hard work and good business ethics... he's not riding on the coat tails of his mediocre football career at all. And he was groomed by the best too... the genius that was Brendan Taman. The guy who could never find a decent starting kicker in his 20 plus years of existence in the CFL as an executive. Give your stupid brain a shake bud.

Anonymous said...

Yawn ... wake me when the new boss punts the excessive bloated player contracts of the previous regime - (O'Day) into oblivion and the new 2016 season starts.

Darren M said...

To the two Cheezie eating jerkoffs that wrote the first two comments. You are pathetic and maybe move out of your parents basement and get a job. You are jealous and envious the Riders have assembled a staff that is man for man the best football people we have ever assembled. So take your garbage comments somewhere else. Rod you should look at a having a user ID but where you can see the real names of these morons and just have them permanently deleted. Then we can enjoy all the true fans that add some really great commentary on your blog. please consider.

Anonymous said...

I liked it better when we just signed retreads

Anonymous said...

Can't agree that registering would be a good idea. Few would. The blog couldn't survive with only the likes of yorktoons idiot, H, Woz, and the rest of the brave handles all having the same foolish opinion.

Anonymous said...

Well well the O'Day and Hopson haters rear the ugly heads
Lets see;
they both have had very successful football careers - you guys no career
they both are successful business men - you guys not successful in any thing
both have very successful football exec careers and are very well thought of in football circles - you guys well no one thinks of you
they both are successful in life - you guys live in the basement and only come out to buy more beer and drugs

no wonder you hate them they are everything that you are not

Anonymous said...

LOL some of you Stamps and Esks fans really are so stupid that they don't even remember the recent excuses they made.

When the rumour was Hufnagel going to Saskatchewan, Murphy was the reason for all the Stamps success and the person responsible for finding all the players.
Now he has gone to Saskatchewan and Cole Hufnagel is your golden child because he worked for the Jets.
What you morons fail to remember is the Jets are perennial cellar dwellers, and that Cole would have been working for the Jets when they drafted Mark Sanchez as their franchise QB. FAIL!!!

You can have the incompetent loser who can only get a job due to nepotism.

I can't wait until all the Stamps and Esks fans EI cheques run out and they can't afford to pay for internet, and we'll never have to hear from them again.

Anonymous said...

Gee if it isn't Steve Mazurak making his debut on the blog! You must also be bitter cause your opinion no longer counts at the top either. Maybe you and JO should conspire to put a whoopee cushion under Reynolds' chair to send him a message that this agression against the old boys club won't stand, man!


B. Lebowski

Anonymous said...

By registering and requiring posters to use use a name or alias, the perpetual idiots and abusers would be readily identifiable.
With proper moderation, the stupid drive-bys could be controlled and when all posters have an identity, most likely a more civil and pleasant tone will result. Heck, even thoughtful discussion and back and forth banter might happen.

I'd have no problem with signing on with a handle, as I occasionally do, but as it is, what's the point?
Give this consideration Rod.

Anonymous said...

Oh boo hoo, your man crush Brendan (he who smak him lips when he talks) was clueless.