CFL: Are Ottawa Redblacks New Player Acquisitions Going To Pay Off?

The Redblacks have three East division titles and one Grey Cup in the CFL, but this doesn’t mean the team isn’t willing to shake things up. Recently, the roster welcomed a seasoned NFL player with former Hamilton Tiger-Cats quarterback Jeremiah Masoli. The 33-year-old player signed a two-year contract as a free agent, and he’s not the first NFL player to join Ottawa’s championship team. Justin Hardy, who once played for the NFL’s Atlanta Falcons, also arrived a few months ago. However, the CFL season won’t start until June, so it’s still uncertain how the team will fare with so many changes and other teams also bringing more talented players. 


Football fans highly anticipate this upcoming season, and sports bettors are already on the lookout for CFL odds and betting lines. If you also enjoy betting on CFL matches and playing online, you may also love this list of free spins with no deposit on registration.


A Brief History of Ottawa’s Football Teams

Ottawa has had several teams over the last two decades. The Renegades franchise folded before the ’06 season, and Ottawa formed a new franchise in 2010 with the Redblacks. The team’s first season took place in 2014, and their first match against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers started strong for the Redblacks with three possessions turned into touchdowns, but the team ultimately lost the game. Their first season in the Grey Cup, Canada’s counterpart of the Super Bowl, saw the Redblacks finish last in both the East Division and the league.


Ottawa brought in new talents to boost their offence for their second season. This paid off with the team dominating the East Division, and the Redblacks brought home Ottawa’s first title since 1978. The following season, the Redblacks struggled a bit more but still won. Unfortunately, it all went downhill from there, with more talented teams forming in the division as crucial players like Kienan LaFrance and Ernest Jackson moved on to free agency. Still, the team was on top of the East Division in 2015, 2016, and 2018.


The New Additions  


After winning the 2016 Grey Cup, Ottawa’s star quarterback Henry Burris decided to retire, leaving the team without a key player. Since then, the team has constantly changed between the various drafts and many injuries that have plagued the Redblacks seasons. 


Even the management saw a new head coach after Desjardins left and Paul LaPolice was appointed. For LaPolice, it’s all about offence, and it makes sense that he was hired since the Redblacks was the lowest-scoring team of the 2021 season. The offence was really in a bad place after Dominique Davis got injured. After several unsuccessful attempts, the fresh arrival of a player like Jeremiah Masoli is clearly meant to plug that hole and find the team’s new star.


Masoli completed 1,280 out of 1,960 passes with 82 touchdowns and 56 interceptions, and it’s clear that a lot of the team’s strategy will revolve around him and receiver Justin Hardy for this 2022 season.



On most teams, if the offence is lacking, it’s often because the team concentrates on having a great defence, but the Redblacks have struggled on both ends. During the last season, they had the worst defence of the CFL, with 31.3 points allowed per game. Only Toronto had similar defence stats.


Ottawa hired a new defensive coordinator, Mike Benevides, to try and make up for this. Benevides previously worked with the Edmonton Eskimos, BC Lions, and the Calgary Stampeders. This is also good news for the Redblacks as under Benevides’ coaching; the BC Lions reached the West semi-finals three times in a row. The defensive line also welcomes a new face on the field, with Cleyon Laing a three-time East All-Star. 


A Promising New Roster That Has Something To Prove 

The Ottawa Redblacks are improving their team on both sides by recruiting many talents to stay on top of the East division and maybe obtain once again the precious Grey Cup. The new management team has an excellent track record, and the new players are seasoned veterans that are used to more significant competitions like the NFL. 


However, it’s not enough to have a cast of all-star players, and we still need to see how LaPolice and Benevides will make these talented players work together. For their next game, the Redblacks will face the Winnipeg Blue Bombers for a high-tension face-off, as LaPolice has a history with them. 

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