Riderville Roundup – January 7
Published: Sunday, Jan 7th 2024, 2:01pm
By Alex Dormuth (@RealAlexD)
Happy New Year, Rider Nation! I hope everyone had a great end to 2023 and enjoyed the holiday season! Now that the calendars have flipped over, we can REALLY start to focus on the 2024 season and how the Roughriders are going to work to get back on the winning track.
The new calendar year began with my look at the biggest question marks on the Riders roster. I’m surprised at how few pending free agents the team has re-signed, especially some of the bigger name, key contributors. Granted, after back-to-back poor seasons, maybe you don’t want to bring back many at all. I’m curious how much 2023 cap room General Manager Jeremy O’Day had to use as bonuses and how that affected the negotiation process. With the lack of re-signings, it makes you wonder how much cap room they actually had and how much influence Head Coach Corey Mace is having on the roster.
That said, we had a ‘Super’ re-signing on Thursday, as star kick returner Mario Alford was re-upped for the 2024 season. He’s had a couple of stellar seasons in green and white and I look forward to another one this season. I said it last year with Kelly Jeffrey, but I really hope that Offensive Coordinator Marc Mueller can find ways to use him in space on offense. Bubble screens, quick hitters, jet sweeps. Get him the ball!
On Friday, the team announced that they have released veteran LB/DB Derrick Moncrief. We’ve been saying since the season ended that ‘Crief is one guy that the team should move on from on the field (lost his starting job to C.J. Reavis), but the team loses a veteran in the locker room and more importantly, a great man off of the field. Derrick, your community work here in Saskatchewan was bigger and better than anything you did on the field. And considering you were an all-star multiple times and the heartbeat of this team for many years, that’s saying something. THANK YOU for your time as a Rider both on and off the field!
Subscribe now to The Piffles Podcast so you don’t miss anything in Rider Nation! Join Greg and I this week for the first episode of 2024! There are a few re-signings from late in 2023 that we need to bring up and we’ll discuss the hiring of Rider great Dan Farthing as Head of Strength and Conditioning.
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