Blue Bombers re-sign running back Johnny Augustine

Started by ModAdmin, January 26, 2024, 03:04:53 PM

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ModAdmin

Blue Bombers re-sign running back Johnny Augustine

WINNIPEG, MB., January 26, 2024 - The Winnipeg Blue Bombers today announce the club has agreed to terms on a one-year contract with Canadian running back Johnny Augustine. He was scheduled to become a free agent next month.

Augustine
(5-9, 199; Guelph; born: July 7, 1993, in Welland, Ont.) returns in 2024 for his sixth season with the Blue Bombers after first signing with the club in May of 2018.

He has dressed for every game over the past three years, including all 18 last season as well as the Western Final and Grey Cup and finished second on the club in rushing with 267 yards on 45 carries, for a 5.9-yards per carry average. A valuable contributor on special teams, he added eight tackles on the kick cover units, which ranked sixth on the team.

Augustine has dressed for 75 regular season games in his CFL, all with the Blue Bombers. He was not selected in the 2017 CFL Draft but had looks from Edmonton and Saskatchewan before landing in Winnipeg.

He played five seasons at the University of Guelph and in his senior year rushed for 690 yards and nine touchdowns on 122 carries for the Gryphons.
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theaardvark

5'9, 299?  He's beefed up over the offseason, wonder if they are looking at him for a DT spot ;)

Good signing, he's a contributor.
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Blue In BC

#2
Not a bad thing but I wonder what the new contact level is for 2024. He was making about $94K in 2023. That's a lot IMO for an ST player. Perhaps a bigger role for him this season. Does this mean anything about Oliveria possibly returning?

OTOH if Oliveria doesn't return then we probably have another RB on an ELC on the roster. So SMS for RB's might still be lower for a pair of RB's than in 2023.

Overall a bit surprised that we're spending SMS on a back up before we know how much we have to spend on starters that are potential free agents.

Now that's a broad statement and the team may already be aware that certain high level SMS players won't be returning. Or we've signed others but not made announcements yet on those players.

Need a fly on the wall.
2019 Grey Cup Champions

theaardvark

When Harris was holding out, we signed BO20 and JA27, making AH33 redundant.

I'm not saying signing JA27 reduces the desire or price for BO20 at all, but it is a necessary move, regardless BO20 signing, or signing another starting NAT RB, or even bringing in an AM RB, we need a backup to all of them.  And JA27 has shown to be a decent backup.  We'll just have to see if he can perform at 299lbs... ;)

EDIT; looks like the caught the typo... 199lbs...
Unabashed positron.  Blue koolaid in my fridge.  I wear my blue sunglasses at night.  Homer, d'oh.

Blue In BC

#4
Quote from: theaardvark on January 26, 2024, 03:41:41 PMWhen Harris was holding out, we signed BO20 and JA27, making AH33 redundant.

I'm not saying signing JA27 reduces the desire or price for BO20 at all, but it is a necessary move, regardless BO20 signing, or signing another starting NAT RB, or even bringing in an AM RB, we need a backup to all of them.  And JA27 has shown to be a decent backup.  We'll just have to see if he can perform at 299lbs... ;)

EDIT; looks like the caught the typo... 199lbs...

Our 2023 draft pick Rosery will be fighting for a role this TC. No idea if he can or will play ST's or how he might perform as a back up at RB.

It's a complicated question but a team doesn't necessarily need a back up Canadian back up RB. Many teams have a starting import and an import back up that fills a role as a returner and / or receiver.

It may be that Augustine gets a larger chance to win the role as a starter in TC. I think the issue is more about blocking ability than runner per se. IMO he's a better receiver than Oliveria and he's faster but he's taken down easier.

I'm not intending to diss Augustine but of all the potential free agents, I'd didn't think he'd be the next to be re-signed.
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Pigskin

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theaardvark

Quote from: Blue In BC on January 26, 2024, 03:47:57 PMOur 2023 draft pick Rosery will be fighting for a role this TC. No idea if he can or will play ST's or how he might perform as a back up at RB.

It's a complicated question but a team doesn't necessarily need a back up Canadian back up RB.
Many teams have a starting import and an import back up that fills a role as a returner and / or receiver.

It may be that Augustine gets a larger chance to win the role as a starter in TC. I think the issue is more about blocking ability than runner per se. IMO he's a better receiver than Oliveria and he's faster but he's taken down easier.

I'm not intending to diss Augustine but of all the potential free agents, I'd didn't think he'd be the next to be re-signed.


Wherever you back up with a NAT, it opens up places to use your DI.  If you have a NAT backup at RB who can play teams effectively and also return in a pinch, what more can you ask for?  Give you DI flexability.  Now, if you overpay for that NAT, then you have to economize elsewhere.  I don't think Walters would overpay JA27, I think both parties are happy with the deal, otherwise it wouldn't get signed before FA.

Unabashed positron.  Blue koolaid in my fridge.  I wear my blue sunglasses at night.  Homer, d'oh.

Jesse

Quote from: Blue In BC on January 26, 2024, 03:26:41 PMNot a bad thing but I wonder what the new contact level is for 2024. He was making about $94K in 2023. That's a lot IMO for an ST player.

Is that a lot? The minimum is 70k. Assuming your special teams aren't made entirely of people on their rookie deals, you're going to have some vets who have had a raise or two.
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Lincoln Locomotive

Good signing and Brady still hasn't had any NFL tryouts to date....It's more than two weeks since Walters went on air regarding waiting for either BO or DS to make their moves....
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Blue In BC

#10
Quote from: theaardvark on January 26, 2024, 05:06:37 PMWherever you back up with a NAT, it opens up places to use your DI.  If you have a NAT backup at RB who can play teams effectively and also return in a pinch, what more can you ask for?  Give you DI flexability.  Now, if you overpay for that NAT, then you have to economize elsewhere.  I don't think Walters would overpay JA27, I think both parties are happy with the deal, otherwise it wouldn't get signed before FA.



The number of Canadians that are back ups is a constant regardless of position played. RB is as good as any other position but like I said it's not mandatory regardless of whether you start a Canadian RB.

I could ask for a back up on an ELC like Rosery if he's any good and can play ST's. Keep in mind that Augustine started as a back up too. OTOH, we can't have all rookie back ups either.
2019 Grey Cup Champions

Throw Long Bannatyne

Quote from: Blue In BC on January 26, 2024, 03:47:57 PMOur 2023 draft pick Rosery will be fighting for a role this TC. No idea if he can or will play ST's or how he might perform as a back up at RB.

It's a complicated question but a team doesn't necessarily need a back up Canadian back up RB. Many teams have a starting import and an import back up that fills a role as a returner and / or receiver.

It may be that Augustine gets a larger chance to win the role as a starter in TC. I think the issue is more about blocking ability than runner per se. IMO he's a better receiver than Oliveria and he's faster but he's taken down easier.

I'm not intending to diss Augustine but of all the potential free agents, I'd didn't think he'd be the next to be re-signed.

Rosery is small but fast, appears he can also play Safety.  Don't really see him sticking with the squad any longer than Regina Rams star RB Kyle Borsa did 2 years ago.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uksu-uvwB6k

TecnoGenius

Quote from: Blue In BC on January 26, 2024, 03:26:41 PMOTOH if Oliveria doesn't return then we probably have another RB on an ELC on the roster. So SMS for RB's might still be lower for a pair of RB's than in 2023.

Overall a bit surprised that we're spending SMS on a back up before we know how much we have to spend on starters that are potential free agents.

I think all posters covered the possibilities already.  I think this may indeed hint Brady is coming back.

We have to establish one thing: Can JA27 be the franchise RB?  I say no.  When he & Brady were earning similar pay and had to duke it out in TC and early games, it became very clear Brady was better.  Johnny can't shed first contact with brute force.  He can snake and weasel around and make you miss, and he has better top speed, but he can't do the every-down up-the-gut must-break-first-contact like Brady.

I do think Johnny could be good enough as starter if we shifted to a run-last O, like BC.  However, I would put the odds of that scheme shift at zero.

So if Brady is leaving and we can't get a Brady-level NAT replacement (one does not exist, even Antwi wouldn't be as good), then why on earth do you want a higher-paid (higher than ELC) backup RB?

If we are rolling with an IMP franchise RB, then either we buy a high $ FA, or we risk it all on some new ELC scouting find.  In either case you hire an ELC scouting find as the backup, or you retain a multi-threat guy like McCrae and he's the backup (and DI) and thus can sub in as receiver sometimes.

What I find most peculiar is why not tie him to a 2-year like most of our other signings?  We can always release him after year 1.  That would hint JA27 wanted 1 year.  Interesting.  That would imply he thinks he can do better $$ in 2025... he'll have to show it on the field!
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TecnoGenius

Quote from: theaardvark on January 26, 2024, 03:23:25 PM5'9, 299?  He's beefed up over the offseason, wonder if they are looking at him for a DT spot ;)

Ounces.  299 ounces.  :D  :D
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TecnoGenius

Quote from: Blue In BC on January 26, 2024, 03:47:57 PMIt may be that Augustine gets a larger chance to win the role as a starter in TC. I think the issue is more about blocking ability than runner per se. IMO he's a better receiver than Oliveria and he's faster but he's taken down easier.

Why do you say that?  BO20 was pretty good at catching passes last season, though we don't scheme those very often.

I'm not sure I've ever seen Johnny take a pass in a reg-season game??  Sure you're not thinking McCrae?  That TD grab of his was epic.
Never go full Rider!

Jesse

Quote from: TecnoGenius on January 27, 2024, 01:17:26 AMI think all posters covered the possibilities already.  I think this may indeed hint Brady is coming back.

We have to establish one thing: Can JA27 be the franchise RB?  I say no.  When he & Brady were earning similar pay and had to duke it out in TC and early games, it became very clear Brady was better.  Johnny can't shed first contact with brute force.  He can snake and weasel around and make you miss, and he has better top speed, but he can't do the every-down up-the-gut must-break-first-contact like Brady.

I do think Johnny could be good enough as starter if we shifted to a run-last O, like BC.  However, I would put the odds of that scheme shift at zero.

So if Brady is leaving and we can't get a Brady-level NAT replacement (one does not exist, even Antwi wouldn't be as good), then why on earth do you want a higher-paid (higher than ELC) backup RB?

If we are rolling with an IMP franchise RB, then either we buy a high $ FA, or we risk it all on some new ELC scouting find.  In either case you hire an ELC scouting find as the backup, or you retain a multi-threat guy like McCrae and he's the backup (and DI) and thus can sub in as receiver sometimes.

What I find most peculiar is why not tie him to a 2-year like most of our other signings?  We can always release him after year 1.  That would hint JA27 wanted 1 year.  Interesting.  That would imply he thinks he can do better $$ in 2025... he'll have to show it on the field!

I personally don't view the signing of JA27 as a hint of anything. For all intents and purposes, he's a special teamer, not a running back.

Even in early 2022, when Harris first left and Brady struggled for the first half of the season. Even when Brady was getting hammered in a game for a 0.9 rushing average. Augustine was never used. This coaching staff does not see him as a viable option.
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Blue In BC

Quote from: TecnoGenius on January 27, 2024, 01:19:30 AMWhy do you say that?  BO20 was pretty good at catching passes last season, though we don't scheme those very often.

I'm not sure I've ever seen Johnny take a pass in a reg-season game??  Sure you're not thinking McCrae?  That TD grab of his was epic.

He has taken a few passes in regular season games including 1 for 58 yards. I say I think he's better if given more opportunity because of his speed and ability to shake and bake in open spaces.
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Pigskin

Surprised we haven't signed Hallett and Exume yet.
Don't go through life looking in the rearview mirror.

Blue In BC

#18
Quote from: Pigskin on January 27, 2024, 04:21:44 PMSurprised we haven't signed Hallett and Exume yet.

I'm pretty sure we get Hallett back but not as sure about Exume. Exume is not a bad ST player. However I'm wondering whether Noah Hallett will be back and whether Ford returns from NFL tryouts.

The fact we'll have 10 draft picks this year means players like Exume may be in tough due to possible options and roster size.
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Pigskin

Quote from: Blue In BC on January 27, 2024, 05:29:11 PMI'm pretty sure we get Hallett back but not as sure about Exume. Exume is not a bad ST player. However I'm wondering whether Noah Hallett will be back and whether Ford returns from NFL tryouts.

The fact we'll have 10 draft picks this year means players like Exume may be in tough due to possible options and roster size.

Exume is excellent on teams. Probably one of our fastest players, and doesn't get injured. I am keeping him before Noah. Exume has played in 32 games and has 42 ST tackles as a Bomber. Under Miller he will do very well.   
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Pigskin

JA27: 75 Games as a Bomber. 14 catches for 130 yards, Avg. 9.3, Longest 58 yards. Rushing 195/1135 yards, Avg. 5.8 yards, longest 55 yards. 21 ST tackles, with his best year in 2023 with 8.
 
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TecnoGenius

Quote from: Blue In BC on January 27, 2024, 01:31:52 PMHe has taken a few passes in regular season games including 1 for 58 yards.

Hmm, don't recall, must have been mostly YAC??  Like a hitch screen, or even a pass sweep?  I only recall McCrae pulling in a deep bomb spectacular catch.
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TecnoGenius

Quote from: Jesse on January 27, 2024, 12:16:37 PMI personally don't view the signing of JA27 as a hint of anything. For all intents and purposes, he's a special teamer, not a running back.

Even in early 2022, when Harris first left and Brady struggled for the first half of the season. Even when Brady was getting hammered in a game for a 0.9 rushing average. Augustine was never used. This coaching staff does not see him as a viable option.

JA27 is here as the backup to RB.  Period.  If he was some WLB or something he would have been cut already.  He's a good STer, but not among the really good ones.

So, if BO20 gets injured in-game, then JA27 is the #1 RB the rest of the game.  If BO20 is still injured next week and the week after, JA27 is starting.  But then if BO20 is out with a season ender... that's where it gets interesting.  Do we roll all the way with JA27??  Or are we hitting the phone immediately??

I think the answer to that would depend on how good JA27 did in that first 1.5 games as #1...

The other posters made a good point, though... if we started an IMP RB, would we still have JA27 as the backup?  And the answer is maybe; probably yes, because of the oddities of the ratio.  However, with capable McCrae often dressing as backup WR, we could make our O work with an IMP RB plus McCrae as the backup.  In that scenario there would be zero reason to retain JA27.  The fact we did retain him means that scenario is off the table.
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TecnoGenius

Quote from: Pigskin on January 27, 2024, 04:21:44 PMSurprised we haven't signed Hallett and Exume yet.

Hallett The Less Injured may be looking for a payday.  For 2 seasons he's really stood out as an athletic guy who can make special plays.  As a mostly-STer his ceiling is limited, however, he certainly warrants a fair bit more than ELC.  If he asks $110, can KW justify it?  Probably not.  Hopefully Hallett will take the "playoff discount" and stay for less.
Never go full Rider!

Throw Long Bannatyne

Quote from: TecnoGenius on January 30, 2024, 04:43:56 AMHallett The Less Injured may be looking for a payday.  For 2 seasons he's really stood out as an athletic guy who can make special plays.  As a mostly-STer his ceiling is limited, however, he certainly warrants a fair bit more than ELC.  If he asks $110, can KW justify it?  Probably not.  Hopefully Hallett will take the "playoff discount" and stay for less.

Not sure Mike Miller ever earned more than $100k and he was the GOAT.

Pigskin

I am sure Mike Miller would want Nick Hallett back on this team. Best STs player and backup safety.
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TecnoGenius

Quote from: Throw Long Bannatyne on January 30, 2024, 05:44:23 PMNot sure Mike Miller ever earned more than $100k and he was the GOAT.

Didn't the ELC just get bumped up to $87k?  Or was that $78k.  I'm just looking at the relative amounts, assuming you need to bump up the top performers at least $5-$10 a season??

Surely Miller was bumped $5k a season over all the seasons he was GOAT?  Which is at least 5?

Argh, it's so hard talking $ on this forum as no one has any clue since nothing is published.  At the end of the day, though, I'm thinking you have to dangle more $$ in front of Hallett than you do Cadwallader? (And I love me some Cadwallader.)
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Pete

Last year Miller was signed to a 95K salary according to 3 down. I believe the minimum salary is 70K for 2024 and doesn't increase til 2027 (to 75K). For us to afford to keep Schoen or Olivera would mean a number of cuts of lower end salary players, which might explain the holdup in signings.

TecnoGenius

Quote from: Pete on January 31, 2024, 01:30:55 AMLast year Miller was signed to a 95K salary according to 3 down. I believe the minimum salary is 70K for 2024 and doesn't increase til 2027 (to 75K).

Hmm, well that does amount to around $4-$5k/season bump in pay during his top-performing years then.  Just that the ELC baseline was less when he started ($60?).

So all this Miller talk then hints that Hallett should be content with maybe $80-$85 max?  If someone wants to steal him for $5k more, I'd say give him the extra $5k.  If he keeps up his performance and also improves, he's worth it.  As someone else said, he also is the #1 backup guy to step in when a DB gets injured.  I don't think he's starter material yet, but he doesn't cost us games, either.

Hallett is the fastest and most gifted kick blocker we've had in a looong time.
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