When it comes to football, Ottawa has not had the best of luck. The city has endured many failed attempts at sustaining a football franchise. These failures have led one to wonder if Ottawa was meant to have a CFL team.
Let's just say Ottawa has had as much success keeping their football team in the league as Britney Spears has had keeping sane.
While watching a tape of the Western Semifinal from 2006 (when Saskatchewan beat Calgary), I remembered it was in that year that Ottawa folded from the league and their players were selected by each team in a dispersal draft.
Some players—such as Kerry Joseph and Korey Banks—prospered for their new teams. Others—like Cam Yeow and Cory Hathaway—quickly withered away.
With Ottawa on the verge of a new franchise in 2010, let's take a look at where some of the former Ottawa Renegades are now.
Kerry Joseph, the former Renegades quarterback, was one of the few players taken in the draft that had success. He is arguably the greatest former Renegade.
The Sashatchewan RoughRiders gave up Scott Gordon and Corey Holmes to move up in the draft and select Joseph, and it paid off. Joseph started in 2006 for Riders and helped the team upset Calgary in the Western Semifinal.
The team lost to BC in the Western Final, but it was still a successful season.
The next year, under the tutelage of Kent Austin, Joseph was named the League MOP and helped the Roughriders win the Grey Cup.
The next year, Joseph was traded to the Toronto Argonauts. The team only won four games, but Joseph had decent stats. Heading into a new season, Joseph will be the Argos starting quarterback.
The former Renegades offensive lineman has had a successful stint with the Bombers.
In 2006, he was the only offensive lineman for the Bombers who started all 18 games. Khan’s blocking helped paved the way for Charles Roberts, who had a monster year rushing the football. He was also nominated by the Bombers as their Most Outstanding Offensive Lineman.
Khan was injured the next season, but Winnipeg’s running backs had success when he was in.
Khan is still playing for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.
With their second pick in the dispersal draft, Saskatchewan selected receiver/return specialist Jason Armstead.
Saskatchewan needed a receiver and a returner to replace Corey Holmes, who fled to Hamilton. The Riders were hoping that Armstead could bring some excitement to their offense.
He did to some extent. Armstead had 651 yards and six touchdowns, a far cry from his 1,307 yards he had in 2005. The next season, Armstead's play began to drop. He had never really provided for Saskatchewan in the return game and he had begun to complain about his playing time.
Armstead was traded to Hamilton and has since bounced around to different teams. He has never rekindled his magic he had in Ottawa.
In a pick that likely still has Stampeders fans scratching their heads, the Stamps selected linebacker Cam Yeow in the dispersal draft.
This pick was definitely one of the most questionable in the early stages of the draft. Cam Yeow was brought in to help Calgary's linebackers, but made no impact for the Stampeders.
Looking back, fans will no doubt wonder why the team picked Yeow over players like Kai Ellis and Korey Banks.
Yeow is no longer with the team.
In a move to sure up their offensive line, the Bombers selected a second offensive lineman.
Val St. Germain provided some depth for the Bombers, but he was in no way an impact player.
Germain would play one season with the Bombers, then with the Roughriders before retiring.
Banks has been arguably the most solid pick from the dispersal draft and you know there are some teams that regret passing him up.
Banks was a ball hawking defensive back in Ottawa and continued his trend in BC.
In three seasons with the Lions, Banks has recorded 17 interceptions and three touchdowns. He won a Grey Cup with the Lions in his first year, but more importantly, helped turn BC's defense into a dominant unit.
Banks is still playing at a high level for BC.
Montreal went with the speedy defensive end for their first pick.
Ellis did emerge as a relatively dominant defensive player for Montreal.
His 75 tackles in 2006 were second on the team and he provided pressure on the quarterback. In the next season, he played only 11 games but still had 39 tackles.
Ellis signed with Winnipeg in 2008 and played fairly well. He was recently traded to the Edmonton Eskimos, where he will compete for a starting defensive end spot.
Collier appeared to have the potential to be a solid defensive end, but he never developed in Edmonton.
Collier attended Edmonton training camp, but was cut.
He signed with the Hamilton Tiger Cats and recorded five sacks the following season.
Collier is no longer in the league.
Throughout the rest of the draft, there were no real players that made a huge impact on their teams.
Markus Howell (second round) has been a pretty solid return man for Calgary, and D'Wayne Taylor (third round) has developed into a good linebacker for Montreal.
When all is said and done, Ottawa was starting to put the pieces together. Unfortunately, poor management drove them into the ground.
Hopefully when 2010 rolls around, Ottawa will get started on the right foot, and being to develop their football identity once more.