Riders’ Brandon Bridge on Zach Collaros contract: ‘I learned a lot about free agency’

Brandon Bridge is remaining posed amid the numbers on Zach Collaros’ reworked contract coming out.

Bridge inked a one-year contract extension for the 2018 season in December.

After signing with the Riders in August of last year, the Mississauga-born pivot started in Week 13 for the Riders in Hamilton and guided the team to a victory with 231 passing yards and three touchdowns. Two weeks later, he came off the bench to lead a comeback win against Toronto, finishing 20-of-28 for 292 yards and two touchdowns.

Overall, Bridge passed for 1,236 yards with a 66.6 completion percentage (92-of-138) and 10 touchdowns to just four interceptions while adding 20 carries for 127 yards and one touchdown on the ground. He sparked the Riders offence in the East Final, completing 11-of-21 passes for 141 yards and one touchdown in the team’s defeat. The TD toss was the first by a Canadian in a post-season game since Russ Jackson in the 1969 Grey Cup.

Saskatchewan went out and traded for Collaros in January. Head coach Chris Jones has remained adamant that the quarterback competition remains open, but the Collaros contract numbers indicate otherwise.

2016 Grey Cup MVP Henry Burris believes in Bridge.

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42 Comments on Riders’ Brandon Bridge on Zach Collaros contract: ‘I learned a lot about free agency’

  1. Bridge got bent over. Poor bastard.

  2. I hope Chris Jones is a man of his word, but that’s allot of money for a backup QB, Although contracts aren’t guaranteed

    • Trevor Levi-Wrangler Richardson // January 20, 2018 at 8:24 pm //

      Why wouldn’t Jones play the QB that gives him the best chance to win? Let’s not be stupid, folks. Jones wants to win more than anything else and will break rules to get it done. There is no way he’d risk wins simply to play the QB that is making more money.

      And as for Bridge, exactly where else was he going to sign and become a starter? Montreal??? LOL! He’s in the best spot he can be in right now. Collaros had serious accuracy issues last year. If he can’t correct those, he will not play.

  3. Bridge is not a bonafide starting QB yet. I hope he uses this year to learn to play within the system rather then high school football throwing it up whenever and hoping for the best. He showed signs of becoming a good one but he is not there yet and I hope he understands that. If he is patient and uses this year to learn to be more disciplined I think he could be THE guy in a year or two.

    • sumyungguy // January 20, 2018 at 12:04 pm //

      He proved himself well enough last year. Bridge was the better quarterback in the 2nd half of the season. He doesn’t like to be a backup forever.

  4. Eddy Rayner // January 19, 2018 at 2:24 pm //

    Read elsewhere both ZC and BB were on 1 yr deals. If so, BB probably got a raise from last year and gets to go for more next year and (hopefully … from a player perspective) under a better CBA. He will be just fine.

  5. I love to bash Chris Jones as much as the next guy, but I will say this. He seems like the kind of coach who doesn’t give a damn what he pays you. If Zach sucks, Bridge will get his shot. Life….finds a way.

  6. What I learned is Bridge’s 2018 base salary is only for backup money. Any higher number would only be achieved through incentives.

    Money amount given to Collaros also shows who Chris Jones has more confidence in. Jones has more faith in somebody who lost his last 12 starts over anybody on his current roster.

    Jones would also look like an idiot if he pays an offseason bonus of $225,000 to somebody who is not clearly his starting quarterback.

  7. Flanker41 // January 19, 2018 at 2:44 pm //

    I see lots of talk here about money. Where do you guys get your info from?

  8. The Riders 2018 QB expenditures will be Collaros+Bridge+Adams, it really doesn’t matter who starts. The only thing this tells us is that the Riders aren’t going to cut Collaros outright once the season starts. They are committing to having him on the roster for 2018.

  9. Wow… what are they smoking in Sask!? The guy was dreadful after his injury. Brandon Bridge is work in progress, but clearly on his way up and has the tools to be a big star in the CFL. I wouldn’t worry if I was BB, Collaros had plenty of time to turn his game around and didn’t produce. You’ll be no#1 next year. You read it here!

    • Jeff Garcia's Agent // January 19, 2018 at 3:54 pm //

      He wasn’t dreadful after his injury, just last season with a clusterf#*k team that couldn’t protect him and had gave up on Austin.

      When Collaros returned from his ACL injury week 8 in 2016, he produced the following the remainder of the year: 10 Starts, 232-347 66.8%, 2938 yds, 18 TD, 8 INT, 100.8 passer rating. Over 18 games, that translates to 5288 yds, 32 TD, 14 INT.

      What’s so bad about that? Those are MOP caliber numbers(look at Reilly’s numbers from this season).

      • solara2000 // January 19, 2018 at 6:12 pm //

        Sorry Bud but even as a ZC fan and supporter, he stank out the joint last season. I know he didn’t get a lot of help, particularly on the O-Line, and schemes but as the saying goes, “the buck stops here (QB)” as far as relying on his knowledge, experience and skill to make lemonade out of lemons. Not saying he could have won the 8 games he started in, nor even half of them, but he showed little leadership and generalship.

  10. Jones has shown that he’s not afraid to switch out a player who isn’t producing. So regardless of whether or not Collaros takes the snaps on opening day it’ll be up to him to keep the job.

    Hopefully Bridge doesn’t mope if he’s the backup and is ready to go at any time. It’s pro football. He isn’t owed anything, just the same as Collaros

  11. fannotacoach // January 19, 2018 at 3:48 pm //

    I hope the very best for Bridge and have always cheered for him. However regarding his comment perhaps he should be having a discussion with his agent who should have been advising him during the negotiations.

    • Yeah, comments like this tell you he still has a bit to learn in terms of being a leader. I agree with him in that this is still probably too much for Collaros, but it’s still a pay CUT of over $100,000 for him and only a one year deal. I’m sure the Riders would have liked to pay less but I’m also sure they didn’t want this to drag out. And who knows, maybe these were the numbers they had to agree to to make the trade. Next year after the new CBA $400k might be about right for a starting QB, in which case both Collaros and Bridge would be in line for that kind of contract IF they win the starting job throughout the course of this year.

  12. 1. Agreement with the players union is up after the 2018 season, so no one players or teams are really willing to commit to contracts going past this year.

    2. I believe it is an open competition. Both Bridge and Collaros are on 1 year deals and have questions about them (Bridge – consistency, Collaros – did the last 2 years in Hamilton ruin him), who ever grabs control of the starters role gets the long term contract extension.

    • count on it // January 19, 2018 at 4:02 pm //

      my goodness you are smart……I couldn’t have said it better. Wait a minute I actually tried. Mine came out ok too.

  13. count on it // January 19, 2018 at 4:00 pm //

    Both on one year contracts. Zach is getting experience/starter money and hopefully he is able to play well enough to earn it. Bridge is not quite ready for prime time and another year as 1B or 2 gives him time to learn and grow without the team riding on his shoulder. Next year, with that year and being 4 yrs younger (CDN might be worth something too) we’ll see who gets offered starter money to keep him. Can’t see both being here after 2018. Just my opinion.

  14. Michael Kulyk // January 19, 2018 at 4:02 pm //

    bridge would look very good in an argos uniform

  15. Farhan stirring up some sh!t.

  16. greenrider89 // January 19, 2018 at 5:40 pm //

    Zach Collaros is the starting quarterback in Saskatchewan, no question about that. The money that will be handed over once the new season begins, states everything. The only way Collaros doesn’t start will be due to an injury, or he is absolutely dreadful. Brandon Bridge will remain the backup as he was to Kevin Glenn. As much as I am surprised, Chris Jones had absolutely no interest in James Franklin. Once Hamilton and Saskatchewan made the trade, Franklin promptly signed with Toronto, while stating he had no interest in Saskatchewan, period. But this revelation of Chris Jones’ interest in Collaros, then signing him to a contract, could cost the Roughriders dearly come 2019 when both Collaros and Bridge will be free agents. If the Zach Collaros experiment should fail, Bridge could leave the Roughriders in a heartbeat due to the ruthlessness of Chris Jones. And yet, Bridge could stay pending upon his opportunities in 2018 with the Roughriders. Brandon Bridge is holding up a big heart with the green and white. And kudos to Brandon Bridge for as such.

  17. How can Hank tweet Nridge is the starter of the future? Collaros is in his late 29’s to early 30’s. Got a very good reworked contract & has started & won in the CFL. The body of work of Collaros is much more than Bridge. If Zach plays well then he’ll be rewarded with a new longer term deal after a new CBA is reached. Bridge will no doubt leave then when his contract is up to go elsewhere. Some of the stuff Hank says, wow.

  18. Sorry about the typos. Meant to say that Collaros is in his late 20’s to early 30’s.

  19. RobERider // January 19, 2018 at 6:34 pm //

    Hank is talking out of his hole. The same could have been said for him when he went to hamilton. His future could have been “undecided” while he was with Calgary and lost his job to then drew tate. Some humble pie would be nice to hear out of him.. as opposed to the crap he just spewed on Twitter.
    Also… who’s to say that Collaros isn’t the future. He’s what 3 or 4 years older than Bridge? Plus he has a ton more experience. As far as this Rider fan is concerned. Our future is Collaros. The Ticats were stupid to keep Masoli over him.

  20. eddiefelson // January 19, 2018 at 6:37 pm //

    Brandon: ask for a trade-hamilton needs a starter now, and you could walk all over masola

  21. Antlerman // January 19, 2018 at 7:28 pm //

    Jones is paid to win games if Collaros gives the Riders the best chance to win he will start if Bridge gives us rhe best chance he will be in no matter who makes more money plain and simple

  22. Bridge will learn…he’s been screwed by Jones. But it is his own stupid fault. Jones sold him that he was going to be a strong candidate to compete for number one. Didn’t he realize that he is better then anyone with Montreal and thus would get starter money? Hopefully all this doesn’t bring a cancer tp the dressing room.

    • BleedzGreen // January 21, 2018 at 4:58 pm //

      Jones reached out to Bridge on Jan. 3rd (day Collaros was acquired). The following is from a Jan. 5th article entitled ‘Chris Jones Talks Quarterbacks’ (Riders’ website):

      “But Jones isn’t anointing his new acquisition as the Roughriders’ starter just yet — and the head coach made that abundantly clear to Bridge when the two talked Wednesday [Jan. 3rd].

      I told him, ‘It’s a situation where I don’t see anything different from last year,’ Jones says, referring to a campaign in which Glenn beat out Bridge for the starting job in training camp. ‘There’s going to be competition like there always is.’”

      Jones hasn’t misled Bridge. Since becoming GM/HC he’s always maintained that there’s an open competition at every position, and the BEST will play.

      As for Bridge starting in Montreal, that would’ve been the end of a promising career IMO… Mike Reilly would struggle with the Als.

  23. Boils down to agents, all I got to say, Collaros must have one hell of an agent! For him to negotiate a contract like he did for Collaros. Maybe change agents Air Canada, because it sounds like Chris Jones has no respect for you, and you got shafted, because your a Canadian QB. But as a Ti-Cat fan wish Collaros all the best, because he did falter last year, but it wasn’t entirely all his fault. Poor defense st start of season, and an insufficient O Line, and poor play calling, with NO running game, and every team was constantly blitzing, and Collaros just got pummeled. All the best to Zach, class guy on and the field.

  24. Can we just stop with this Air Canada stuff? That is just another stupid Rod Black nickname. I wish TSN would get rid of him.

  25. DownWithRod // January 20, 2018 at 10:22 am //

    Haha totally agree. Rod Black sucks. Doesn’t even really know the game. And his names are ridiculous. Speedy B, the Lemonator, Air Canada. Give it a rest Rod and use their actual names like every other sports caster in every other sport. Just stick to figure skating or equestrian announcing

  26. OldBaldGuy // January 20, 2018 at 11:34 am //

    Air Canada was the name he got playing NCAA, so…maybe give Rod a pass on this one! As for this scenario, both Collaros and Bridge are on one-year deals, so may the best man win and work themselves good contract for 2019. One of them will move on after this year. Personally, I think that working Williams up the ladder might be the hidden gem in all this. Not sold on Adams…but I’d like to see him prove me wrong.

  27. Stumps choke // January 20, 2018 at 1:47 pm //

    Every thing is as it should be. No job guaranteed no starter anointed it’s January folks. Pot stirring seems to the theme around here. But I think BB getting a chance to watch a Collaros from the sidelines is a great way for BB to see another starting QB who can play at a high level. With the right attitude it won’t hurt and can help. And vice versa. It’s a team folks. And If Collaros still can’t win, you see BB. Riders have a good QB’s.

  28. Big mistake signing Collaros to 450 thousand with 200 thousand up front for a guy that will lead the league in interceptions and sacks against this will happen Bridge will be the starter by game 5 again Collaros will b the most expensive backup again he’s done one good hit he’s out been watching him for 5 yrs in Tor and Ham he’s very injury prone

  29. If pro sports were not a ‘win right now’ then BB would start for the Riders.

  30. Edward Leslie // January 21, 2018 at 2:29 pm //

    Hey, I’m a Rod Black guy. He clearly loves the CFL and has great chemistry with the incomparable Duane Forde for TSN. Look forward to hearing those guys call games in 2018. I hope Chris Schultz returns too. I could do without Milt Stegall though!
    Replace him with Kate McKenna or Henry Burris.
    As for Brandon Bridge, another year as the backup won’t kill him. But I think he’s ready to be the starter if Collaros fails or gets injured again.

  31. Hey… Jones is not afraid to sit highly paid underachievers. Derek Dennis sat last year for being out of shape and slow. I am sure they would love to trade him and his salary

  32. Burris is right on Bridge being closer to starting right now than Zach Collaros based on Bridge’s performance in recent seasons and that of Zach where no one knows which Collaros we’ll be seeing this season.

    I do think the comments that Bridge should be talking to his agent about doing his deal too soon versus speaking up like a Kevin Glenn would if he felt a bit shafted. Glenn can get away with it given his longevity and track record.

    I also think the comments that Chris Jones will play whoever he wants at QB are right on. He’s not afraid to change QBs if one guy is struggling or in Glenn’s case last year – to avoid him getting killed. This HC is not one to name his starter and not bring in his backup so yes, Burris is right.

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