Finally Odell Willis trade goes down

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Re: Finally Odell Willis trade goes down

Postby KnowItAll » Mon Mar 26, 2012 2:07 pm

all of which pales in comparison to the NFL player who chose to risk his life fighting for what he beleived in instead, and died in the doing.
From the pages of dumb crooks

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Re: Finally Odell Willis trade goes down

Postby WestCoastJoe » Mon Mar 26, 2012 2:16 pm

Rammer wrote:
WestCoastJoe wrote:
KnowItAll wrote:
be honest, how many people in this world are not "me first" "look out for number one" "get as much as you can" etc. Sure, most include family and friends, but the attitude is still the same.


Honest?

There are lots of athletes, and people, that make a decision in lfe that me first is not as good as team first.

Travis Lulay.

The Sedins.

Any of those people that give big to charity.

Sports championship teams are led by team players. Guys and girls who have learned that team first goes farther than me first.

Just IMO. You can see it differently.


Khalif Mitchell has to be at the top of that line, as he spurned his NFL $ by re-upping with the Lions.


Oh yeah. Recall the post Grey Cup video, an emotional Khalif MItchell saying "my Brothers, my Family" about his teammates.

That spirit contributed immensely to the Lions' victory.
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Re: Finally Odell Willis trade goes down

Postby WestCoastJoe » Mon Mar 26, 2012 4:09 pm

http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/sports ... 39646.html

Adam Wazny, Winnipeg Free Press

Bombers GM Joe Mack said he was in regular contact with Willis following the Grey Cup loss to B.C. last November, as the rush end was looking for ways to get out of his deal so he could explore opportunities in the NFL.

"He categorically came to me a number of times after the Grey Cup and said he wanted to be released," a frustrated Mack said Thursday. "It was black and white; I just think he didn't totally comprehend what his contractual status was."


* "regular contact" ... As in high maintenance pain for management

* Wanted out of his deal, so he could try for the NFL

* Managing him frustrated GM Joe Mack

The fun-loving Willis leaves the Bombers after his best season in the CFL. The 6-2, 255-pound dynamo had 13 sacks in 2011, earning a CFL all-star nomination. He was dominant during the first half of the season, leading the league in sacks, but quickly fell out of favour with defensive coaches for his inability to defend the run game.


* Inability to defend the run

After losing his starting spot, Willis didn't handle the demotion well and when he tweeted he would rather be home for Thanksgiving than with his team for the Grey Cup, it was essentially the end of the road for the University of West Georgia product.


* Didn't handle the demotion well

* Dissed the Grey Cup

"People have their own opinions about how they want to look at things; I look at it like I made a mistake and I want to learn from it. Character is not a problem," said Willis.

* The Bombers, however, were worried about Willis' distraction potential.

"We felt it was best for the team and the locker-room to go in another direction," head coach Paul LaPolice said. "Sometimes you have to make decisions based on more than talent alone."


* "Character is not a problem," says Willis ... Not in his mind, but in the minds of others, his behavior is the definition of character problems in a team game.

* "The Bombers, however, were worried about Willis' distraction potential." Yup.

* "best for the team and the locker room to go in another direction" ... Ouch

* "Sometimes you have to make decisions based on more than talent alone." Ouch. Well now I would say that they have thrown him under the bus.

And I would say that Mack and LaPolice are happy he is gone. And I would say the Riders paid too much for a guy with negatives.

Bad deal for Taman and the Riders IMO. Good deal for Mack and the Bombers. IMO ...

Looks like a duck, walks like a duck ... Hmmmmm, usually it is a duck. And that is not likely to change.
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Re: Finally Odell Willis trade goes down

Postby TheLionKing » Mon Mar 26, 2012 8:58 pm

I say just let him go and try the NFL and if he doesn't make it .....so sad too bad. Don't let him back. Not worth the trouble
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Re: Finally Odell Willis trade goes down

Postby WestCoastJoe » Tue Mar 27, 2012 6:09 am

http://www.vancouversun.com/sports/Roug ... story.html

New Roughrider Odell Willis never asked to leave Winnipeg

By Murray McCormick, Postmedia NewsMarch 26, 2012

REGINA — The reaction to the Saskatchewan Roughriders’ recent acquisition of import defensive end Odell Willis was mixed.

A number of comments on message boards felt the Riders had addressed a need by acquiring an elite pass-rushing defensive end. Others felt that the Riders gave up too much to pick up the 2011 CFL all-star from the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

Saskatchewan surrendered picks in the second (eighth overall) and fourth (23rd overall) rounds of the 2012 CFL draft, as well as a conditional draft pick in 2013. The Riders received Willis and a fifth-round pick in the 2013 draft in the trade that was completed Thursday.

The negative reaction wasn’t limited to what the Riders surrendered to acquire Willis, whose 13 sacks tied him for the league lead in 2011 with Justin Hickman of the Hamilton Tiger-Cats. Many felt that Willis was a distraction in Winnipeg’s locker-room and he’s limited to simply rushing the quarterback and was ineffective against the run.


"distraction in the locker room"

"ineffective against the run"

There were also reports that Willis wanted out of Winnipeg and is looking to bolt to the NFL after playing out his option in 2012.

Willis was in Regina on the weekend to meet with the team’s coaches. He also met with the Regina media on Monday where he responded to questions about his background and what he can contribute to Riders.


Willis felt the negative perception of him was largely founded on the reports that he wanted to leave the Blue Bombers after 2 1/2 seasons.

“They said I wanted to get out of Winnipeg and that wasn’t true,” the 27-year-old Willis said. “I just wanted to test the waters in the NFL. I now understand the (collective bargaining agreement) and the agreements in it. I understood that I had to come back for my option year and I didn’t have any problem with that. I would have been fine playing in Winnipeg and I was looking forward to playing in the new stadium, but this is a business and things happen.”


LOL He says he did not want to get out of Winnipeg. He just wanted free from the Bombers. So he could try out for the NFL. LOL This is specious reasoning and a poor attempt to justify his actions.

"I now understand the CBA and the agreements in it." Oh yeah, better check that CBA, Odell. You are stuck in the CFL. And you are stuck in Regina.

Willis said he’s still interested in trying out for NFL teams after the 2012 season. He didn’t rule out re-signing with the Riders, though.

“I like the fan base and the atmosphere here, so it won’t be that easy leaving,” Willis said. “We’ll make that decision after the season is over. Right now, I’m just happy to be here because there isn’t anything like the fans in Riderville.”


Regina has him for one year, and then he wants to try out for the NFL. No commitment to the Riders or to the CFL.

Willis created some controversy leading up to the 2011 Grey Cup game when he tweeted that he wished he was home for American Thanksgiving rather than in Vancouver as the Bombers prepared to face the B.C. Lions. Willis felt the reaction to that tweet was blown out of proportion.

“I had been with my family every year for 26 years for Thanksgiving and all I wanted was a plate,” Willis said. “People took it as I wanted to leave Winnipeg. All I wanted was a Thanksgiving plate and a home-cooked meal. There isn’t anything wrong with the food up here, but there isn’t anything like your parents’ food. I learned from that and I have moved on.”


Blame it on the turkey. He was unhappy and he ran his mouth. He dissed the Grey Cup as a Canadian cultural event.

Willis, six-foot-two and 255 pounds, started his CFL career in 2009 with the Calgary Stampeders. He had six sacks in nine games before being traded in September of that season to the Blue Bombers. He added four sacks in seven games with Winnipeg.

He had 11 sacks in 2010. In 2011, Willis had nine sacks in Winnipeg’s opening eight games. He tailed off in the second half of the season with four sacks. He didn’t record a sack during Winnipeg’s 34-23 loss to the Lions in the Grey Cup game.

Willis said the second-half drop-off was a result of teams adapting to his style of play.

“Teams really started to pay attention to me,” said Willis, who recorded 14 of his 27 defensive tackles in the final 10 games of the regular season. “I was on the right side the whole time and things went well at the beginning. Eighteen games is a long season and you play each team at least twice, so they will have film on you. I did OK considering they were keying on me.”


"I did OK considering they were keying on me." LOL

Yeah and Cam Wake did OK with three guys blocking and holding him. And he was happy every day he was here. Same with Khalif Mitchell.

Willis feels he can also defend against the run.

“I want people to think I can’t play against the run because then I’ll have more chances to make plays and act foolish,” Willis said.


Yeah well, he has the acting foolish part down pat.

As for playing the run, he has some ways to go to get people to think he can do that.

Corey Chamblin, the Riders’ rookie head coach, feels that Willis can be effective when it comes to defending the run.

“People look at his pass-rushing ability and they wonder why his run-stopping ability isn’t there,” Chamblin said. “He’s better than average in that area, he just needs to get better. We still want him to get to the quarterback. The run isn’t going to beat you as badly as that passing game will.”


"(people) wonder why his run stopping ability isn't there" ... Chamblin

Willis also addressed the perception that he wasn’t a team player.

“I’m very much a team guy because without a team, what are you as a person?” Willis said. “I love defensive backs because they make my job easier. I love the rest of my defensive line. You’ve got to have an offence because if you hold them to zeros, you have to have someone who can score. I love everybody because you can’t do everything by yourself.”


"I love everybody" therefore I am a team player. LOL Keep on talking, Odell.

He is entertaining, in an annoying kind of way. IMO ...

And he is a talent. He may get 15 sacks this year, and 30 tackles. For me, though, I am happy he is in Regina, and not in the Lions' locker room. I suspect he can upset a locker room before he is even in it.
..........

Quiet news days in the CFL, so Odell is keeping me entertained, sort of ...
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Re: Finally Odell Willis trade goes down

Postby Blue In BC » Tue Mar 27, 2012 7:56 am

I might point out that Arland Bruce was dumped from two different teams becasue of attitude issues. Sometimes a player just needs to be in a different environment to turns thing around. Messam seemed to do well for the Esks after leaving the Lions.

The CFL is full of players good at some things and not as good at others. Many have character issues which can be controlled by coaches. Others will just find themselves out of the pros all together if they doen't change.

This might be a reality check for Willis. As Chamblin said, his play against the run was on the average side, but the league is a passing league. The structure of the Winnipeg defense may have changed to give him more responsiblities for the run than he was comfortablw with and that may have taken him off his game in rushing the QB. There is no denying he is very capable of that role.

How he does in Regina is TBD but if he wants to get a shot in the NFL, he better live up to their expectations or may not even be in demand in the CFL.
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Re: Finally Odell Willis trade goes down

Postby Rammer » Tue Mar 27, 2012 8:21 am

Blue In BC wrote:I might point out that Arland Bruce was dumped from two different teams becasue of attitude issues. Sometimes a player just needs to be in a different environment to turns thing around. Messam seemed to do well for the Esks after leaving the Lions.

The CFL is full of players good at some things and not as good at others. Many have character issues which can be controlled by coaches. Others will just find themselves out of the pros all together if they doen't change.

This might be a reality check for Willis. As Chamblin said, his play against the run was on the average side, but the league is a passing league. The structure of the Winnipeg defense may have changed to give him more responsiblities for the run than he was comfortablw with and that may have taken him off his game in rushing the QB. There is no denying he is very capable of that role.

How he does in Regina is TBD but if he wants to get a shot in the NFL, he better live up to their expectations or may not even be in demand in the CFL.


Bruce has had a slightly different reputation IMO. He becomes vocal when 'his' team isn't winning and in his mind he could help by getting the ball more, which wasn't the case in either Toronto or Hamilton. In both cases it was a lack of QB'ing skill and game planning that held him back, so venting was out of frustration on results, not a me type scenario that Willis has displayed with the Thanksgiving/NFL approach.

Messam did change, but he was also given opportunity which wasn't the case in BC. Now long term he may prove to be more like the BC Messam with his teammates than the allstar RB on the field of 2011.
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Re: Finally Odell Willis trade goes down

Postby ziggy » Tue Mar 27, 2012 8:51 am

I think O'dell is still a "legend in his own mind". Maybe if he drops the attititude and smack talk he'll be successfull. If he is coached to play a team game, play positionally and not try to pad his individual sack numbers, he'll likely play better against the run.
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Re: Finally Odell Willis trade goes down

Postby WestCoastJoe » Tue Mar 27, 2012 9:02 am

Blue In BC wrote:I might point out that Arland Bruce was dumped from two different teams becasue of attitude issues. Sometimes a player just needs to be in a different environment to turns thing around. Messam seemed to do well for the Esks after leaving the Lions.

The CFL is full of players good at some things and not as good at others. Many have character issues which can be controlled by coaches. Others will just find themselves out of the pros all together if they doen't change.

This might be a reality check for Willis. As Chamblin said, his play against the run was on the average side, but the league is a passing league. The structure of the Winnipeg defense may have changed to give him more responsiblities for the run than he was comfortablw with and that may have taken him off his game in rushing the QB. There is no denying he is very capable of that role.

How he does in Regina is TBD but if he wants to get a shot in the NFL, he better live up to their expectations or may not even be in demand in the CFL.


Dunno much about Arland leaving Toronto. Seemed like he didn't like Andrus' offence.

In Hamilton it seemed like a salary dump, with younger, cheaper talent to fill in.

He seems like a much different type of player than Willis. I had some concern about Arland coming here. But when I saw him at practice, he was so hard working, having so much fun, I was won over fast. Could he go sour? Dunno ...

Willis could be OK in Regina. Personally I would not gamble on him. He seems child like. Mercurial, immature, without impulse control, going off the rails easily.

If he does poorly, it looks like a very bad deal for the Riders. If he does very well, it looks like he will be off to the NFL for a tryout. And it seems he is oftentimes unhappy or not motivated or sulking. "High Maintenance"

I would rather a team find it's own new rush end, without the baggage, and more committed to the league, beyond one reluctant year.

Just IMO
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Re: Finally Odell Willis trade goes down

Postby Blue In BC » Tue Mar 27, 2012 9:41 am

I don't see the need to discredit Willis. Charles Roberts was a " me " player as well and a star in the CFL. Couldn't block worth a darn and caused some dissention on the team. All players have strengths and weaknesses. Many state they are only in the CFL in order to get a tryout in the NFL.

It kind of goes with many players in the pros. Social media is making some of the character flaws more widely publicized than in the past.

I just think too much is being made of Willis's shortcomings.

Anyway. Slight rant over.
Last edited by Blue In BC on Tue Mar 27, 2012 2:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Finally Odell Willis trade goes down

Postby Sir Purrcival » Tue Mar 27, 2012 9:42 am

Just to add to the Bruce conversation, Wally checked into it before taking on Bruce and in his words, couldn't find a single player who said anything negative about Bruce as a team mate. Recall also the story after the Winnepeg loss about how Bruce went around to the players, cheered them up, made them feel good about themselves. It was at that point where the season could have completely fallen apart. We all know what happened and in no small part was Bruce a part of that. He played awesome and broke the back of the opposition a couple of times. Do you get the same sense that Odell would/could do that?

Bart Andrus was a tool as coach. Bruce doesn't hold back when he is unhappy but lets face it, he was dead on about Andrus and in Hamilton, have to agree with West Coast, it was more about salary. After having him for a good chunk of last season, can anyone say they saw anything from him but great football and professionalism? The man just worked hard and helped make our team a champion.
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Re: Finally Odell Willis trade goes down

Postby Big Time » Tue Mar 27, 2012 10:09 am

Sir Purrcival wrote:Bart Andrus was a tool as coach. Bruce doesn't hold back when he is unhappy but lets face it, he was dead on about Andrus and in Hamilton, have to agree with West Coast, it was more about salary. After having him for a good chunk of last season, can anyone say they saw anything from him but great football and professionalism? The man just worked hard and helped make our team a champion.


You're bang on, here, Sir Purrcival. When Bruce was shipped out of the Argos, people couldn't believe it. The guy had been a star for the Argos his entire career and was the only receiver they really had at the time. I saw it as a huge step backwards for the Argos at the time. Andrus wanted to go in a different direction and Bruce was shipped to the Ticats where he was very effective. He had a slow start last season due to injury and he was basically salary dumped to BC.

I think AB3 is a fun loving personality who dances to the beat of his own drummer. That sometimes rubs people wrong. However his presence and temperament was exactly what the Lions needed to turn their season around. Just by having him on the field, it freed up receivers like Geroy and made the Lions offense so much more potent. I'm glad we have him.
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Re: Finally Odell Willis trade goes down

Postby WestCoastJoe » Tue Mar 27, 2012 11:20 am

Blue In BC wrote:I don't see the need to discredit Willis. Charles Roberts was a " me " player as well and a star in the CFL. Couldn't block worth a darn and cuased some dissention on the team. All players have strengths and weaknesses. Many state they are only in the CFL in order to get a tryout in the NFL.

It kind of goes with many players in the pros. Social media is making some of the character flaws more widely publicized than in the past.

I just think too much is being made of Willis's shortcomings.

Anyway. Slight rant over.


Willis draws a lot of attention. He can be a spectacular player on the field. But even moreso at times, he draws a helluva lot of attention off the field.

With this kind of player, there is naturally backlash, especially when things don't go so well.

It is also a quiet time in the off season. He makes news, and gets a reaction.

He may do well in Regina. Dunno ... But it also looks like if he does well, he will be off to NFL tryouts, if he gets offers.

I personally found his Thanksgiving/Grey Cup comments offensive and ill-considered, disregarding 100 years of history. In your face stuff like Swaggerville grew stale as his stats declined, and as he was not all that effective in the playoffs.

I don't wish him poorly, no schadenfreude (wishing ill on someone) involved. He is just news that gets a reaction.

He is fun to talk about. :wink: And he has his fans, including Taman and Chamblin. It seems clear Mack and LaPolice are no longer fans, since their latest comments pretty much threw him under the bus.

Slight rant over ...
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Re: Finally Odell Willis trade goes down

Postby Blue In BC » Tue Mar 27, 2012 2:45 pm

Sir Purrcival wrote:Just to add to the Bruce conversation, Wally checked into it before taking on Bruce and in his words, couldn't find a single player who said anything negative about Bruce as a team mate. Recall also the story after the Winnepeg loss about how Bruce went around to the players, cheered them up, made them feel good about themselves. It was at that point where the season could have completely fallen apart. We all know what happened and in no small part was Bruce a part of that. He played awesome and broke the back of the opposition a couple of times. Do you get the same sense that Odell would/could do that?

Bart Andrus was a tool as coach. Bruce doesn't hold back when he is unhappy but lets face it, he was dead on about Andrus and in Hamilton, have to agree with West Coast, it was more about salary. After having him for a good chunk of last season, can anyone say they saw anything from him but great football and professionalism? The man just worked hard and helped make our team a champion.


Yes, I'd say that Willis was one of several inspirational players on the Bombers ( Swaggerville and all that ). I was never under the impression he had any issues with any teammates. He was capable of dominating / dictating what offenses did.

While he took some offside penalities he also drew procedure penalties on his opponents.

One hand I'm sorry to see him go but do think the Bombers did well to be rid of him given his current state of mind and the fact of gaining a good draft pick.
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Re: Finally Odell Willis trade goes down

Postby Sir Purrcival » Tue Mar 27, 2012 10:40 pm

I guess we'll just have to disagree on that point. In my view, team players don't go all self absorbed halfway through a season. When they are not performing well, they are usually their own harshest critics. What did OW display?; a me attitude. Not a hint of introspection or soul searching, just turkey at home in the shadow of the biggest game of the year despite is own diminishing performance. No, I don't think that in his current incarnation, he is a team guy but neither would I expect his former team mates to say anything about it either regardless of what they thought personally. Those things are usually best left in the dressing room. The Bombers willingness to part ways with him doesn't suggest they thought he was a great team player. He reminds me somewhat of Barrin Simpson. While he was a good player, he too didn't seem to willing to work with the teams he played for if he wasn't getting his own way. Happened here in BC and again in Winnipeg. Ego can be a terrible taskmaster and Odell seems pretty full up with it. Time will tell. Odell is now in arguably the least forgiving football market in the nation. If he does well, there will be lots of boasting and chest pumping but it is how you conduct yourself when things aren't so good that character really shows.
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