TORONTO – On Monday, December 16th the Ottawa REDBLACKS will make the most crucial roster decisions in their brief history as general manager Marcel Desjardins and his staff attempt to compile a list of players that will transition from existing CFL clubs to Ottawa for 2014.
But there are a lot of questions surrounding the Expansion Draft: How many players can be picked? Can there be trades? How many imports/non-imports? What about free agents?
CFL.ca breaks down every major facet of the upcoming Draft as we near the December 16th selection period.
Live Expansion Draft Coverage
CFL.ca will be broadcasting the announcement of the selections for all three rounds LIVE on Monday in addition to posting exclusive interviews and analysis.
Expansion Draft Milestones and Key Dates: November 25 – Ottawa REDBLACKS are granted permission to begin signing free agents not currently under CFL contracts December 9 – Protection List submission December 16 – 2013 Ottawa REDBLACKS Expansion Draft
Round by Round Overview: Round 1: Ottawa selects 8 import players (one from each team) Round 2: Ottawa selects 8 non-import players (one from each team) Round 3: Ottawa selects 8 more non-import players (one from each team)
Protections: On December 9 at 1:00pm all 8 member clubs must submit a list of protected players to the Canadian Football League office that contains 10 import players, 1 quarterback and 6 non-import players.
CFL clubs will submit a second list of additional non-import players for protection prior to the third round of the draft.
Quarterbacks: Teams will protect 1 quarterback ahead of Round 1. If they lose a quarterback to Ottawa, they can then protect an additional 2 non-imports in Round 2. A team cannot lose both a quarterback and a kicker in the Expansion Draft.
Kickers: Teams can protect import kickers in Round 1 or non-import kickers in Round 2. If they lose a non-import kicker/punter to Ottawa, they can then protect an additional 2 non-imports in Round 2 or 3. A team that loses an import kicker can protect an additional non-import as well. A team cannot lose both a quarterback and a kicker in the Expansion Draft.
Trades: Ottawa is able to trade with other teams during the expansion draft and any time before that. All of the other 8 member CFL clubs cannot trade with each other as of December 9th.
Releasing and Signing Players: As teams were eliminated from the 2013 CFL playoffs, they were not allowed to release any active roster players. Non-CFL free agent players can be signed at any time before the draft but can be eligible to be selected in the Expansion Draft if unprotected. Between December 9-16, teams cannot make any trades unless they are directly with Ottawa, release any players, but they can re-sign their own players, and can also sign non-CFL free agents who would be automatically added to the team’s unprotected list.
Free Agents and Transferring of Contracts: If Ottawa selects a player that is a pending CFL free agent, they will retain negotiating rights to that player until February 15, 2014. Once players are selected by Ottawa, the REDBLACKS assume their current contracts including salary, length and pending free agency.