Friday, 10 February 2012

Alouettes and DeAngelis Part Ways, Is Whyte the Clear Number One Kicker?

The Montreal Alouettes have released Sandro DeAngelis from their roster.

Last year, Jim Popp made kicker, Brody McKnight their first selection in the draft. Immediately after, he acquired Sean Whyte from the B.C. Lions many pegged a dream scenario for the team.

But Popp brought a whole new meaning to competition because shortly thereafter he signed DeAngelis. In conversing with a team source on the day DeAngelis signed, it came as a surprise that they would bring in another kicker to camp.

It proved to be an excellent calculated move by Popp knowing McKnight would not be apart of the present roster. As a result, Whyte rose up from the competition against DeAngelis coming up with clutch kicks throughout camp and into the preseason.

However, for DeAngelis, he did not anticipate being in the shadows of Whyte for the entire season. No question, DeAngelis was great with the media. Never did he have a look of anger, as he always smiled to everyone. In fact, we had a couple of conversations about the best Italian restaurants in the city.

DeAngelis' greatest professional triumph was helping propel the Calgary Stampeders to the 2008 Grey Cup by nailing all five of his field goals in 22-14 victory over the Alouettes. It seemed ever since that moment, it hasn’t been the same.

After moving from Calgary to Hamilton, the honeymoon did not last long as a lot of the fans blamed him for the team’s loss to the Toronto Argonauts in 2010 division semi-final. Even though he was two for three in field goal attempts, he missed a late opportunity that could have sealed a trip to Montreal.

Unfortunately, the cruelty of football is evident as a player is brought in simply to be an extra body. Essentially, DeAngelis fit the profile as he continued to practice with the team, and help Whyte get prepared for games. From public observation, there was never any animosity between the two as they worked with great synergy.

Moving Forward

Whyte will be entering camp as the number kicker on the depth chart. Not too far away is McKnight who they have very high hopes for.

One would ponder, could there be anther situation where this time it is McKnight who plays the role of being a supporter for Whyte?

Come June in Lennoxville, it could an intriguing battle between these two considering that in 2011 the Alouettes gave up some real estate in the field position battle. So who could come out on top?

As for where DeAngelis could end up, it would be difficult to forecast who is in need of a kicker.
The first team that comes to mind is the Tiger-Cats, considering that Justin Medlock is exploring his NFL opportunities, but would they want to go down this road again?

Keep in mind, new head coach George Cortez knows DeAngelis from their time in Calgary, and could bring him in for a training camp tryout.

Another option is the Toronto Argonauts and there’s no denying that Noel Prefontaine’s illustrious career is soon coming to a close. So if DeAngelis is willing to be patient, he could have an opportunity kicking in the controlled climate of the Rogers Centre.

But for now, the Alouettes have somewhat cleared up their kicking situation until training camp.

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