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Above the 49: Plenty of possible landing spots for Leos' Simon
By Daniel Fung, Sports Network Columnist
Vancouver, BC (Sports Network) - The BC Lions may be undecided about whether or not to bring Geroy Simon back into the fold for the 2013 season but there are plenty of other CFL teams that would gladly snap him up in a heartbeat.
Simon, the CFL's all-time receiving yards leader, has a contract for next season but that's no guarantee the long-time face of the Leos - who turned 37 back in September - will be back in the orange-and-black for a 13th campaign.
The CFL's 2006 Most Outstanding Player had an injury-plagued 2012 season that forced him to miss five games and resulted in him finishing with just 700 yards receiving to go with two touchdowns. Those numbers have prompted some, including his general manager Wally Buono, to wonder if Simon's best days are behind him. He had previously posted nine consecutive seasons with 1,000-plus yards receiving. If Simon doesn't return to the Lions' den in 2013, here are three possible landing spots for the six-time CFL All-Star.
What better way for the Argos to make a splash coming off a Grey Cup championship than by adding a sure-fire future Hall-of-Famer to their roster? Adding Simon on a squad that already features the 2012 Most Outstanding Player in Chad Owens is certainly a tantalizing prospect and should give fans in Toronto all the more reason to continue tuning in.
Adding another big-play threat and a consistent producer such as Simon also would take some pressure off of Owens with opposing defenses expected to pay much more attention to him after his tremendous 2012 campaign.
There weren't many downfield threats for quarterback Darian Durant in 2012 outside of Weston Dressler and Chris Getzlaf.
A healthy Rob Bagg might have made a difference for the Roughriders but it's clear that they still haven't quite found a replacement for the production they got from Andy Fantuz prior to him testing the NFL waters with the Chicago Bears in 2011.
Simon would give them that solid, dependable production they need, not to mention replacing some of the veteran leadership they lost following the loss of Gene Makowsky and Chris Szarka in recent years due to retirement. Simon's history of success could also serve them well in a year they are hosting the Grey Cup. They would love to make it three-in-a-row for the home team to not only appear in the big game but also to win it all.
WINNIPEG BLUE BOMBERS
There are many fans of Simon who feel that if he can't finish his CFL career in orange-and-black then the only other colors he could possibly go out in is the blue-and-gold that he came into the league with.
The Bombers could certainly use an offensive star like Simon to add to their lineup after a disastrous 2012 campaign that saw them manage to put up a league-low 376 points. (No other team had fewer than 400.)
Although Winnipeg was only one of two teams - Montreal was the other - that had two players put up over 1,000 receiving yards last season (with long-time veteran Terrence Edwards and Most Outstanding Rookie Chris Matthews both managing to achieve the feat), finding a fit for a superstar like Simon should be no issue.
There's also a familiarity factor between Simon and oft-injured quarterback Buck Pierce (assuming the latter is back next season in Winnipeg as a starter) as the two were teammates in B.C. from 2005 to 2009.
12/12 11:51:11 ET