May 24, 2006

"When you get to the end of your rope, you tie a knot.": And that knot is the CFL if you are a player banished from the NFL. Ricky Williams might be playing in Toronto this year.

posted by gspm to football at 07:34 AM - 25 comments

Good for Ricky and good for the NFL and CFL. If Ricky can turn his life around and prove that he is still worthy to play in the NFL, then so be it. This should be the final chance for Ricky though. He has had plenty of chances to turn his life around and has not been able to do that yet. Hopefully this is the "kick in the chest" that he needs to learn to control his habits. I know that it was probably just pot and although it is a minor drug, it is still illegal and against the rules. I would think that he would be able to give it up for just a few more years and become one of the greatest running backs and then take up smoking again and just chill for the rest of his life. I mean come on. If he can prove himself and get his millions of dollars for the next few years, he will have plenty of money to burn away in a bowl.

posted by grabofsky74 at 08:24 AM on May 24, 2006

Does anyone in the world have any compassion for the New Orleans Saints? If Mike Ditka knew then what he knows now, would he have foresaken every draft pick in every round that the Saints had in exchange for the damaged goods we now know as Ricky Williams? Although Ditka is a mental midget, I would like to think that he would not have intentionally caused the largest disaster to slam New Orleans prior to Katrina. What do you think?

posted by bigdogsjd at 09:40 AM on May 24, 2006

I just want the Argos to bring Michael Jenkins back so the jersey I bought when I was up there (a guy in a store on Yonge St. sold it to me for half price, and threw in a T-shirt and poster as well!) a few years ago will be relevant again.

posted by ajaffe at 09:56 AM on May 24, 2006

My guess is that Ricky Williams destroys the CFL, and rushes for 2000 yards.

posted by everett at 11:59 AM on May 24, 2006

Ricky Williams in the CFL. Before you know it he'll have everyone in the CFL failing drug tests.

posted by The Toz at 12:09 PM on May 24, 2006

If he makes it, it's going to be fascinating. Toronto has a solid O-line, which should give Ricky lots of room to move. Even more importantly, the mere threat of Ricky Williams will give a ridiculous amount of time and space to Damon Allen, who will not be shy about putting it to good use.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 12:22 PM on May 24, 2006

Wow Dr John, I am impressed... I didnt know people knew that much about the CFL off the cuff.

posted by everett at 12:28 PM on May 24, 2006

maybe Ricky just see's Toronto's hockey jersey and is thinking of the wrong leafs

posted by steelcityguy at 12:31 PM on May 24, 2006

why is it that these high paid athletes get off the hook so easily with second (and in William's case third) chances at life. If this had been any of us...we'd be in jail right now. No chance at rehab. No chance at pulling down 7 figures (that's for sure). Now, changing gears. Williams either turns out great in the CFL, ressurrecting his carrer, or is out of football by 2008.

posted by chemwizBsquared at 12:33 PM on May 24, 2006

If this had been any of us...we'd be in jail right now. Depending on the state and for a pot possesion violation (which williams didn't do he just pissed dirty), we probably wouldn't be in jail. How much of a difference will Ricky make? From my understanding CFL is very pass heavy and the runnig game is not as big a factor as it is in the NFL.

posted by HATER 187 at 12:41 PM on May 24, 2006

Ricky should have a lot of fun in the CFL. It's a pass-happy league (Doug Flutie once threw for a professional record 6,600+ yards one year) but there is still lots of room for running. No one goes to jail for possession of pot in Canada - unless they're possessing pounds of it for sale. The only problem that I can see is really an Argos problem - the team has been very involved over the last year or so in community outreach to the poorer regions of the city that are being threatened by gang violence. The head coach - Mike "Pinball" Clemens is a wonderful man - a guy who gives and gives and gives (I think they should give him the Order of Canada - but he's an American and doesn't qualify, which sucks) and leads the charge. Part of the program involves players talking to kids about the usual stuff - staying in school, respecting the law and staying away from drugs. Since Ricky really is a poor example of all of this, it makes it a little touchy. But hell - Andre Rison played here without too much incident, so I'll go with it.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 01:05 PM on May 24, 2006

If this had been any of us...we'd be in jail right now. No chance at rehab Since when is a dirty urine test a criminal offense?

posted by BigTallChris at 01:18 PM on May 24, 2006

No one goes to jail for possession of pot in Canada - unless they're possessing pounds of it for sale. One of the many reasons Canada is always on my short list of vacation spots! Come to think of it it's about time for a road trip to Vancouver!

posted by commander cody at 01:19 PM on May 24, 2006

Weedy, I thought the same thing, until Damien Cox raised a very good point: But then again, look back to last spring when Pinball and GM Adam Rita invited Derek Medler to camp. Medler, after a splendid career at Laurier, had landed in jail, and this was his stab at resurrecting his football dream. I remember asking Pinball why he would bother with such a potential problem, and he looked at me with an incredulous look on his face. "Why would you ever give up on anybody?" he said. That, it seems to me, is consistent with the the message the Argos have been trying to spread in the troubled parts of the GTA.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 01:23 PM on May 24, 2006

While the CFL is pass-happy, a running back of Ricky Williams' abilities will certainly be utilized (not to mention, Ricky can catch the ball out of the backfield, or even as a flanker, which he's done before). I'm with the Good Doctor; if Ricky signs with the Argos, behind their line, he runs through the CFL like a .45 slug through wet Kleenex.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 01:26 PM on May 24, 2006

From my understanding CFL is very pass heavy and the runnig game is not as big a factor as it is in the NFL. Well, in three down football you can't get by with pounding it ahead for 3.3 yards a play. But the recently retired all time rushing leader, Mike Pringle, ended up with 16,425 yards in 187 games (an average of 87.8 yds/game, compare to NFL career rushing leader Emmitt Smith, 18,355 yards, 226 games, 81.2 yds/game). So it kind of depends. With the wider field and the emphasis on passing the right rusher in the right system can be very effective.

posted by gspm at 02:17 PM on May 24, 2006

I remember asking Pinball why he would bother with such a potential problem, and he looked at me with an incredulous look on his face. "Why would you ever give up on anybody?" he said. This is just a small indication why Pinball Clemons is so well loved up here in Toronto (or Canada in general), and a reason why this season in the CFL might get Williams' career back on track. If anyone can straighten Ricky out, it'll be the Pinball. Side note: If Clemons ever ran for public office in Toronto, there is a very good chance he could win unopposed. There aren't too many people who have such a long career of goodwill and public service like he does. Even if he ran under the flag of an opposing political party of mine, I'd be hard pressed to vote against him. He's one of the few athletes I have ever seen that I would want to be seen as a role model by kids. And I'm not even that much of a CFL fan...

posted by grum@work at 02:20 PM on May 24, 2006

I don't know this for a fact, bit I hear Canada's laws on marijuana possession are pretty lenient (someone correct me if I'm wrong). What is the difference between the CFL and NFL's drug policy. I mean, can Ricky indulge during the season and not get nailed for it. (Sorry if this is a stupid question.) Just wondering.

posted by Desert Dog at 02:33 PM on May 24, 2006

Desert Dog, the CFL doesn't do drug testing (yet). So in theory he could indulge and get away with it. But he'd be under intense, intense pressure from the Argos to keep a clean image, and like grum said, if anyone can keep Ricky clean, it's Pinball Clemons.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 02:45 PM on May 24, 2006

WOW! No drug testing? I wonder how many players would test positive for any illegal drug, be it weed, coke, steroids or whatever. And no, I'm not implying the CFL is full of druggies. Interesting. Thanks Doc.

posted by Desert Dog at 03:17 PM on May 24, 2006

Two things to keep in mind, though: 1. Your average CFL player is much less affluent than your average NFL player, thus access to effective performance-enhancing substances is severely limited. 2. Many CFL players have one eye towards playing in the NFL, which might discourage use. That's entirely off the top of my head, though.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 03:31 PM on May 24, 2006

Plus, while Ricky is suspended for the season, he will still be enrolled in the NFL's testing program, and will be urinating in a plastic cup more often than in a porcelain fixture.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 07:12 AM on May 25, 2006

Listening to the FAN590 right now. Apparently Ricky Williams has been in Toronto all week and hanging out at Argos practices. There are still contractual issues with the Dolphins, though, so no official talks have been able to take place yet. CFL commish Tom Wright: "I read the message boards on various web sites." Hi, Tom!

posted by DrJohnEvans at 05:20 PM on May 25, 2006

it's now official ... the Argos have signed Ricky Williams ... i gotta get back in front of the TV to watch the rest of the press conference on TSN

posted by Spitztengle at 03:55 PM on May 28, 2006

Pinball should get the Order of Canada. I, as a proud (though not nationalist) Canadian and CFL fan, nominate him. Pinball walks his talk and, yes I'd voe for him. Re: Football: Williams will benefit from CFL life. Flutie never regreted a moment, and that cat had more football in his veins than Ricky. Williams is a player that needs spritual and emotional connection in order to perform. He'll do well in T.O. Avery moves to slot and excels.

posted by peregrin at 03:25 PM on May 29, 2006

You're not logged in. Please log in or register.