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  1. #1
    singersp's Avatar
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    CFL needs to honour NFL bans

    Tue, May 2, 2006

    [size=18px]CFL needs to honour NFL bans[/size]

    By PAUL FRIESEN
    The Winnipeg Sun


    It's bad enough the CFL doesn't have a drug-testing policy, and has shown little interest in adopting one.

    When you've got teams going bankrupt on a semi-regular basis, we suppose there are higher priorities than cleaning up your image.

    But could someone please explain why the CFL pays absolutely no heed to the results of drug testing in the NFL?

    We ask this question on the heels of recent moves made by the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and Toronto Argonauts.

    Both teams have shown interest in signing running backs under suspension by the NFL: the Bombers in former Minnesota Viking Onterrio Smith, the Argos in Ricky Williams of the Miami Dolphins.

    The Bombers are particularly keen on Smith, who, unlike Williams, has expressed an interest in actually playing in the CFL.

    Smith and Williams are repeat offenders of the NFL's substance abuse policy, having repeated so often they're both under year-long suspensions -- no mean feat in a league that hands out second chances like socks at training camp.

    The fact they've shown up on the CFL radar is no surprise to anyone who's followed this league over the years. There's a long list of players who leave behind their checkered pasts in the U.S. for a clean slate, not to mention a test-free environment, in Canada.

    It's gotten to the point where if you want a sneak preview of the next big name heading north, just check the rap sheet down south.

    Now, I've got nothing against giving people second and third chances.

    Mike Sellers, for instance, was black-balled by the NFL after an off-season drug arrest a few years back, came to Winnipeg for the 2001 and '02 seasons and rejuvenated his career. He's still in the NFL, and that's great.

    But if the CFL and NFL honour each other's contracts, shouldn't they do the same with suspensions?

    Smith isn't allowed to play in the NFL until October, at the earliest, when his year-long suspension ends. Williams can't play in the NFL this season, at all.

    Yet the Bombers and Argos would be more than happy to put them on the field Week 1, in June.

    "Being that the Vikings basically ripped up his contract, our league will say the guy is entitled to get a job if he's not under contract," Bomber GM Brendan Taman said of Smith. "You're not entitled to say no."

    How do we know that -- has anyone ever tried?

    Of course not. Because the moment the Bombers say they don't want Smith, a rival CFL team will probably scoop him up.

    Competition being what it is, you can't trust CFL clubs to take a high moral ground on an issue like this.

    But you could include it in the CFL-NFL agreement.

    If the two can respect each other's contracts, they can respect each other's suspensions. Put it in writing.

    Why?

    Because welcoming drug cheats with open arms sends a lousy message.

    Even baseball's Northern League knew enough to honour the first drug suspensions handed down by organized ball a year ago.

    Goldeyes pitcher Darwin Soto got 15 games after failing a test, was cut by Seattle, then signed with Winnipeg. But the N.L. ordered him to serve a seven-game suspension to start the '05 season.

    The CFL is more closely linked to the NFL than the N.L. is to Major League Baseball, so this should be automatic.

    Instead, the people who run the CFL turn the other way, at the same time insisting they be taken seriously as a professional entity worth the average Canadian's support.

    We can understand why they don't have a drug policy.

    Money is tight, after all.

    Integrity, it seems, is, too.

    CFL needs to honour NFL bans

    "If at first you don't succeed, parachuting is not for you"

  2. #2
    Prophet Guest

    Re: CFL needs to honour NFL bans

    I see no reason why another country has to honor any guidelines that the USA puts on their sports. Especially since there are no Canadian NFL teams, MLB is a different story.

    The CFL earns their coin from the left-overs of the NFL. For many it's a last gasp effort to get into the NFL. It worked for Flutie.

  3. #3
    singersp's Avatar
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    Re: CFL needs to honour NFL bans

    "Prophet" wrote:
    I see no reason why another country has to honor any guidelines that the USA puts on their sports. Especially since there are no Canadian NFL teams, MLB is a different story.

    The CFL earns their coin from the left-overs of the NFL. For many it's a last gasp effort to get into the NFL. It worked for Flutie.
    It's their country, their rules. The NFL has nothing to say about it.

    If they don't plan on reinstating Smith, let him play where he wants.

    He is not under contract with anyone in the NFL.

    "If at first you don't succeed, parachuting is not for you"

  4. #4
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    Re: CFL needs to honour NFL bans

    I personally couldn't name 5 teams in the CFL. If your a fan of the NFL, you follow the premier sports league in all the world. If they need to have the scraps to field a team north of the border let them have it. As far as following the mandates of drug testing we shouldn't criticize other countries for their policies as long as Bonds is still playing major league baseball.

  5. #5
    singersp's Avatar
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    Re: CFL needs to honour NFL bans

    "Purple_Possum" wrote:
    I personally couldn't name 5 teams in the CFL. If your a fan of the NFL, you follow the premier sports league in all the world. If they need to have the scraps to field a team north of the border let them have it. As far as following the mandates of drug testing we shouldn't criticize other countries for their policies as long as Bonds is still playing major league baseball.
    I don't. What makes you assume that? :scratch:

    "If at first you don't succeed, parachuting is not for you"

  6. #6
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    Re: CFL needs to honour NFL bans

    does it sound like this guy is really all about second chances? hey its either arena league or cfl for those guys. sounds like the real issue is wether the CFL should have a drug testing policy similar to the NFL.

    how can the CFL honour bans and suspensions of NFL rule violations but at the same time allow other CFL players who were never tested or judged for the same thing play? different rules for different players? that doesnt even make sense, unless the CFL adopted the same policies as the NFL. and from a quick search on google, it seems the CFL doesnt have the money to do the same type of drug testing.

  7. #7
    JellyBean2144's Avatar
    JellyBean2144 is offline Pro-Bowler
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    Re: CFL needs to honour NFL bans

    No they don't. It is a different country with different rules. Why should they honor the NFL rules and standards, when we laugh and make fun of their rules and standards?

  8. #8
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    Re: CFL needs to honour NFL bans

    It's a different league not affiliated with the NFL, so they can have anybody they want. Yeah it's wrong to let a cheater into your league, but it's the same as other countries hiding criminals for other countries too.

  9. #9
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    Re: CFL needs to honour NFL bans

    Let them do whatever they want, it is the CFL, not the NFL. If OS wanted to go over to some place in Europe and play another sport would you have a problem with that? NO, it is just because it is close and the same sport. Different league, different rules.

    Thanks Lotza!

  10. #10
    Purple_Possum's Avatar
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    Re: CFL needs to honour NFL bans

    singersp, I never assume anything. It's just my opinion that the NFL is the premier sports league. I base it on the fact the the salary cap has balanced the competition level in the league to the point where any team with one or two smart moves can be right in the playoff mix in any given season. You really don't get that parity in any other pro sports league including the European soccer leagues. I also like the way the market themselves to fans of all ages. As I said it's just an opinion and difference of opinions is what makes sports forum discussions so interesting.

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