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Let’s play Quarterback Roulette

Published: Friday, Dec 8th 2017, 4:12pm

By: Stephen Safinuk @Safimod)

Let’s talk about the QB position in 2018 for a brief second. We are a couple weeks out from Grey Cup now, and all eyes are firmly on the 2018 season (#IsItJuneYet, right?). The Saskatchewan Roughriders made huge strides in going from a 3-15 dumpster fire 2 years ago, to a legitimate contender in 2018, but there is one big question mark going in to the 2018 season. Who will line up behind center when the season opens? Kevin Glenn? Brandon Bridge? James Franklin? Trevor Harris? Zach Collaros? There are so many options, so I’m going to save us all a huge headache and look in to our magical crystal ball and tell you who I think will be starting quarterback next season at Mosaic Stadium.

Will It Be Brandon Bridge?

In short? No. If Chris Jones wanted Brandon Bridge as starter, he wouldn’t have played the “This is Kevin Glenn’s team” all through the back of half of last season when Glenn was struggling. Not to say that Bridge isn’t going to be a quality starting QB in the league, it just doesn’t seem like he is Jones’ guy.

Will it be Kevin Glenn?

Chris Jones is building this team with long-term success in mind. You don’t plan for the future with a QB who will be 39 when the 2018 season kicks off. While Kevin Glenn had a great start to the season, he wasn’t the same after his injury. Chris Jones does seem to have a soft spot for Glenn, so it wouldn’t surprise me to see him back in Saskatchewan for one more year, but I would guess it is more as a backup plan. Having said that, anytime Kevin Glenn has been the “backup plan” he has ended up starting. Perhaps other players may shy away if he sticks around, for their own safety.

Will it be Zach Collaros?

Zach Collaros doesn’t seem like the same guy he was just a few short years ago. There was a time when many believed he was the next star in the CFL, and was well on his way to hitting that mark until he tore his ACL in his right knee in 2015. He went from 25 TDs and 8 INTs (in 12 games) in 2015, so 8 TDs 7 INTs (in 2017) and no longer seems to be a legitimate threat to run the ball.

Having said that, there is no questioning his talent. If he can find his game again, he can still be a top tier QB in the CFL. He will most certainly come in at a discount.

Will it be James Franklin?

We haven’t really seen much from James Franklin since 2015. In fact, over the past 2 seasons, he has only thrown 43 passes (compared to the 133 in 2015). Having said that, when he has stepped on the field, he has looked like a star. 116/176 for 1449 yards and a 12:1 TD:INT ratio. He certainly has the makings of a star in the CFL, but his head is south of the border. If the rumours are true (that he’s only wanting to sign a 1 year deal) I would take a pass on him. As talented as he is, he will be expensive and potentially very short term. Add in the rumours of NFL interest, and I don’t see it.

On the flip side, there is the Chris Jones factor. Jones and Hervey brought James Franklin into the league – will that matter come free agency?

Will it be Trevor Harris?

It doesn’t seem to be a certainty that Trevor Harris will be back in Ottawa in 2018. While both sides want to make a deal work (at least, they say they do), the REDBLACKS have made it clear that the numbers must work. If things don’t work out in Ottawa, he would be a great fit in Saskatchewan. He is a clear #1 in the CFL, with a good number of years still left in him at 32. On the plus side, him and Derek Dennis could have rap battles throughout the season.

My guess, though, is Trevor Harris ends up re-signing in Ottawa, but stranger things have happened.

Final Prediction:

Your 2018 Saskatchewan Roughriders will come out of the locker room with Zach Collaros as the starting quarterback. Of all the options out there, this seems like the best fit without breaking the bank for Saskatchewan, and if he can get his mojo back, he could do great things with the receiving corps that Saskatchewan will trot out next season.

Having said that, I would not be surprised if James Franklin or Brandon Bridge are the starter either.

 

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