Canadian Football League

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Maas Back With First Canadian Football League Team

Jason Maas is back home.
The Edmonton Eskimos announced Wednesday they've re-signed the veteran quarterback. Contract details were not released. Maas, 32, spent the first six seasons of his CFL career with Edmonton, helping the team win two Grey Cup titles. But he was traded to Hamilton following the Eskimos' 2005 CFL championship and was subsequently dealt to Montreal last season.
"Jason is a proven leader and winner whose intensity and passion for the game will be a real asset to the team," Eskimos head coach Danny Maciocia said in a statement.
The Alouettes released Maas last week, allowing him to return to Alberta. Maas, his wife and daughter live full-time in Sherwood Park, Alta.
"I'm thrilled to be home again and play in front of my family and the greatest fans in the CFL," Maas said. "I have tremendous respect for coach Maciocia and that played a big part in my decision to return to the Eskimos."
Maas enjoyed his best season as a pro with Edmonton in 2004, passing for more than 5,000 yards after incumbent Ricky Ray left to sign with the NFL's New York Jets. But Maas was relegated to backup the following year when Ray returned.
He went on to play a major role in Edmonton's Grey Cup run in 2005, coming off the bench in the West Division semifinal and final to rally the club to victories.
Maas gives Edmonton a solid insurance policy at quarterback. Ray missed the end of last season due to injury, which effectively ended the Eskimos' playoff aspirations as the club missed the CFL post-season for the second straight year.
Ray remains the starter with Maas the backup. That leaves Stefan Lefors to and Steven Jyles to battle for the No. 3 spot.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Canadian Football League Cap To Rise

CFL commissioner Mark Cohon on Tuesday announced a 3.75 per cent increase in the salary cap for 2008, from $4.05 million to $4.2 million.
"Our league is moving forward, and the increase in the cap reflects our progress," Cohon said from league headquarters in Toronto.
"At the same time, an increase of this size speaks to our teams' responsibility to our players, who make our game great, and our fans, who keep it strong, to live within our means."
A move to raise the salary cap made sense, Cohon added, when considering average league attendance exceeded 29,000 for the first time since 1983 and domestic television ratings continue to be healthy.
"Still, we have to tread carefully and prudently, so we're building on our success, not jeopardizing it," he cautioned.
The CFL's Salary Management System (SMS) was a success in its first full year in 2007, creating parity in both divisions and helping teams work towards a healthier bottom line.
"As with most innovations," Cohon said, "this is a work in progress and there's always room for improvement, but the system is working and it marks a step forward for the CFL."
The SMS is just one of the topics the league's leaders will discuss at the CFL Congress in Calgary from Feb. 25-28.