Alex Hall happy to be on playoff run in green and white

Hall remains vague on future plans
Reported by Joel Gasson
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You couldn't miss Alex Hall when he stepped on to the field for the first time as a Saskatchewan Roughrider.

The man who leads the CFL in sacks was picked up by the Green and White on Sunday thanks to a trade with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. On Tuesday he practiced with his new team for the first time and at 6'6" Hall is basically impossible to miss.

"To come to a situation like this, a winning team that's going into the playoffs, challenging for a Grey Cup, that's a big deal," said Hall.

Hall admits he was a little surprised by the news and he needed a few minutes to process what had happened when Bombers acting General Manager Kyle Walters told him the deal was happening after the Bombers game on the weekend.

Hall didn't really have any comments on what was going on in Winnipeg; despite everything that's happening on and off the field there this year, there are a few things he'll miss.

"Miss the guys, there's a lot of good people over there," he said.

But of course he's looking forward to hopefully making a long playoff run with the Riders.

Hall may be coming to Saskatchewan as the league's leader in sacks but he won't be getting any special treatment. He's going to be part of a rotation along the defensive line just like everyone else.

"They've all been told they're going to play 40 to 45 snaps a game. They're going to play inside, they're going to play outside," said defensive coordinator Richie Hall. "They have no objections for it."

It's the same kind of rotation the Riders were running among defensive ends before Hilee Taylor was placed on the nine game injured list. So really it's just a return to that system, albeit with a pretty big upgrade.

Ricky Foley, another defensive end on the team, has been on quite the roll lately and he admits that at first when a new player is brought it at the same position you play you might not take the news that well. Now that he's thought about it, however, Foley is on-board.

"After things get explained to you, and what it means to the team, it's a good thing." said Foley. "He's a good guy; I think he's going to buy in."

Bringing in another pass rusher like Hall definitely opens up the ability for the defensive line to get creative. We've already seen it a lot in the secondary this year with players like Craig Butler and Tyron Brackenridge being interchangeable. Now with Hall, Foley and John Chick all being strong pass rushers it opens up different things as well.

"The more guys you have winning (battles along the line of scrimmage), the less they can double team," said Foley. "It's going to be fun, I think."

There are also more opportunities to work Chick at tackle, and perhaps drop Foley back in coverage more, just to keep the opposition offence guessing.

One of the biggest questions surrounding Hall is his future, with a lot of talk that he's going to explore NFL options after this year. Hall remained uncommitted to his future in the CFL, basically saying, "We'll see," when it comes to what could happen in the off-season.