list of potential free agents that the CFL released on Wednesday has a lot of familiar names on it. Some of those players will re-sign with their current team over the next two months, but some won't.
Taking Hamilton's needs into mind – which I believe to be Canadian talent, the Secondary and the Offensive and Defensive Lines – there are two standout players that Hamilton should try to move Heaven and Earth to sign, a couple of non-star players that could help the Tiger-Cats strengthen some of their weaknesses.
If the picture at the top didn't tip you off, the first player is, obviously, Andy Fantuz. Fantuz is likely to be the top player in free agency should he not re-sign with Saskatchewan, and while Hamilton has plenty of good, young players at Receiver, a player of Fantuz's calibre does not come along very often. He had a bad 2011, but various factors contributed to that; however, if you look at his 2010 stats, that's where you see the type of player Fantuz is.
The second player is Byron Parker. The Ti-Cats have not had a ballhawking Defensive Back since Chris Thompson left town following the 2009 season. They could use a player with Parker's skills. It is doubtful that he would leave Toronto, but if he does test the open market, a move down the QEW makes sense.
Those are the two big fish, in my opinion, of free agency when it comes to the Tiger-Cats. They are difference-making players that any team would be happy to have, and Hamilton is no different.
While they may be the two biggest players that could be available, they are far from the only ones.
Hamilton needs help along the two lines and a trio of Eskimos could be the cure for the Tiger-Cats woes. Kyle Koch is not a star, but he could be the replacement for Simeon Rottier if, as speculated, he leaves to go to Edmonton. Koch is also a former McMaster Marauder, so he is familiar with the Hamilton area.
The two other Eskimos both play on the Defensive Line: Greg Peach and Étienne Légaré. Peach could take the spot of Justin Hickman if, as believed, he'll take a shot at the NFL. Légaré could form a nice rotation with Eddie Steele and Robert Rose.
There are, of course, plenty of other players available, and who knows who the Cats would try to go after. Everything will depend on who is named Head Coach.
New player arrive every year, and it'll be interesting to see who the new players in Hamilton will be.