New Jennings deal with Lions byproduct of reality

The restructured contract reportedly agreed upon by Jon Jennings with the B.C. Lions is one of the first signs that the reality-based world under which they operated under Wally Buono for years will be no different with Ed Hervey in charge.

The details, as reported by TSN Friday, suggest Jennings will last through the upcoming CFL season but will be driven instead by incentives, with the added suggestion that the extra salary cap funds now available will allow the Lions to spend more in free agency next month along the offensive line.

In practical terms, that’s a pretty reasonable move by Jennings, who probably would dearly give back what was coming to him this season if he could guarantee he wouldn’t take the beating absorbed as a result of inadequate protection.

But it still amounts to a pay cut by any other definition, which is how it always rolled when Buono was wielding his big stick and clearly no different now with Hervey in charge.

B.C.’s moves in the first quarter of the off-season recruiting period have been textbook. Manny Arceneaux, Cody Husband are foundational pieces. Mike Benson has been solid as a long-snapper. The Gabe Knapton acquisition for Chris Williams could turn out very well. You could quibble about the announcement Friday that import tackle Antonio Johnson is back for two seasons, as it reduces Hervey’s ability to shop around slightly next month when the market becomes clear, but the man obviously wasn’t going to toss everyone overboard and start completely fresh.

Mark it down as a solid move if the Lions can get pending free agents Chandler Fenner, Loucheiz Purifoy and Shaquille Johnson to sign deals in the next month. Yes, Travis Lulay, too.

Jennings, meantime, is now in the somewhat enviable position of being able to play for a substantial payday while still under contract going into what inarguably will be the biggest pivotal season of his young career.

Turn in 2016 numbers and he can make a case for real top quarterbacking money. A repeat of last year and well, you don’t need to be told what happens here. To be sure, Jennings is a victim of bad timing; remember, he was being given peanuts when he threw for 5,226 yards and 27 touchdowns two seasons ago when his eyes were downfield and always wasn’t running for his life, and was finally due to make more than Lulay this year, a reported $300,000, until now.

Call him a victim of reality – getting paid for what you’ve done as opposed to what you might do in the future.

Lowell Ullrich

Lowell Ullrich

Lowell Ullrich has covered the Lions since 1999 and was inducted into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame in 2014. He is also a contributor to TSN1040.
Lowell Ullrich
Lowell Ullrich
About Lowell Ullrich (179 Articles)
Lowell Ullrich has covered the Lions since 1999 and was inducted into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame in 2014. He is also a contributor to TSN1040.

22 Comments on New Jennings deal with Lions byproduct of reality

  1. Brian Lower // January 12, 2018 at 6:01 pm //

    So does that put a Manziel trade to B.C. out of the question now?

  2. oceanvista // January 12, 2018 at 6:35 pm //

    Brian, BC was never in trade talks for Manziel. It’s a work of fiction by TSN1040’s Dave Pratt. Ed Hervey has stated unequivocally that he wants no part of him.

  3. Diehard Lions fan but it’s going to take significant upgrades in some key areas and Jennings back in 2016 form for this team not to finish last again.

    Still too much of the old regime around for me although Hervey was far and away the best thing Wally did last year.

  4. Rick cowan // January 12, 2018 at 7:43 pm //

    I would think that the Lion’s would try to Re_sign Fabian and Bazzzie they are good players

  5. I like the headline: a “byproduct of reality”. You would think all developments in the CFL are closely connected to reality – I mean, if not reality, then what?

    However, there are some events that appear to be connected to alternative dimensions, such as the Ticats’ belief that this Johnny kid will be the first exception to everything we’ve learned about NFL flame-outs over the past few decades.

  6. Manziel was never part of the picture in BC. As stated, We wanted no part of him.
    We have solid Canadian content and even losing Marco Ianuzzi to retirement, we will hopefully extend Shaq Johnson and already have Danny Vandervoort as two solid Canadian.
    Agree with Rick, Keeping Bazzie would be nice and I am really looking forward to seeing Gabe Knapton in Black & Orange. My wish list always include another Cam Wake and another Tyrone Williams. Williams is one no one knew except diehard Lion fans. He was highly underrated. He was a load in the middle of our D-Line

  7. Ridersnhabs // January 12, 2018 at 11:36 pm //

    Acually I’m very happy that Jennings is willing to restructure his contract . Sets a bit of a precedent in the league and jones can use that as a bargaining chip in negotiations with collaros

  8. What’s Biggies situatio

    • My understanding is Biggie’s not coming back in the foreseeable future.
      Miss him but wish him all the best.

  9. TouchDownBC // January 13, 2018 at 4:25 am //

    Bouno Dorazio need to go

    • Wally is the WINNINGEST coach in the HISTORY of the game, thank you very much for the last decade or so Wally.

      I seldom am critical of Wally but remember two occasions.
      One was when we let Dan Dorazio slip away to the Riders. MANY have said he is the best in the business. Patrick Kabongo said he wished he had gone to BC sooner as he would heave been better for playing under Dan Dorazio. So…I’ll take his word over yours when its comes to Coach Dorazio lol.
      Second time I questioned Wally was in 2011, we started 0-5 (?) 1-6(?) and I thought we were better than our record. Thought maybe it was time. Turns out I was right/wrong. We were better as we won the Grey Cup and it was not time.
      I also questioned his decision to not ‘let go’ when he gave the reins to Bevevides, and his decision to hire Tedford but that was in hindsight. Af first I thought it was a great move. Fresh person yet knew our game. Hindsight is always 20/20 however.

  10. As a Lions fan I never understood the hate some other Lions fans have had for Wally. The Lionbashers site is full of negative comments from fans who fancy themselves way more knowledgeable and football savvy than Wally. Guess that’s why the site only has about a dozen posters, hard to find more posters that know more than the CFL’s winningest coach. To those fans I say, I’ll take Wally’s record over yours anyway. Lol

  11. NICE

  12. Agreed Ziggy. People who do not really understand the game always blame the one in the ‘spotlight’ as it were. In hockey, the goaltender always get the blame. Everyone tends to blame the QB for a pick. You get a person like me watching baseball or basketball and I’d do the same thing because I see but I don’t really get the game. Even us diehards don’t know it all but we tend to see things others don’t. Ex. Was disappointed that, other than out own website, no mention that we extended Mike Benson. Hell, half of the “so called” Lion fans might be asking right now, “Who is Mike Benson.”
    We LOVED Lui but we also know that ball did not get back there for him by itself.

  13. Why does he say the ‘offensive line’ was partially responsible for his poor performance? “He was running for his life… and as a result couldn’t hit his numbers.” That’s a poor excuse as Lulay was clearly more efficient in all aspects with the same offensive line. Bottom line… Jennings has huge potential, but needs better coaching and more experience. Hopefully he will mature into a proper starter.

    The real question is… Lions need to bring in some real competition at QB this spring. Why haven’t they made any moves?

  14. Byron !!!! Camp is not tomorrow.

  15. TouchDownBC // January 14, 2018 at 4:12 pm //

    Former Leos like Jimminez and a few others werent happy with Dorazio and made comments to the media…most sacks allowed again=overated

  16. Pick a different year and it will be least sacks allowed. Many other factors to consider.
    Sure, if a QB stands back there forever, he will eventually get sacked.

  17. TouchDownBC // January 14, 2018 at 10:08 pm //

    Oline fail falls on entire staff including Bouno Jones Dorazio Jennings & Oline…Lions had a top Oline under Doug Malone when he coached Oline for Tedford/Cortez

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