Canadian football player suits up for AAF opener

While Brett Boyko dreams of playing in the NFL again on day, he has found a home for now in the Alliance of American Football.

The brand new eight-team league held its opening games this weekend and Boyko, who is from Saskatoon, suited up for the San Diego Fleet in its matchup against the San Antonio Commanders.

The B.C. Lions drafted Boyko 14th overall in the 2015 CFL draft, but he never played for the team. Over the last three years, the offensive lineman has been on and off of various NFL teams’ practice squads and even started a game for the San Diego Chargers before finally landing with the AAF.

“Me and my agency, we had our mind set on the NFL, so I wasn’t really aware of (the AAF) but obviously jumped at the opportunity,” the 26-year-old told the Calgary Herald. “You get paid pretty well and it still gives you an opportunity to go play in the NFL, so absolutely you can make it work.

Some observers have worried that the AAF might threaten the CFL as it will likely bleed players from the league once free agency opens this month. But others say the Canadian game is unique enough that it will survive.