Further Review | Sports You can make it to the NFL by going through Canada By Dave Reardon Feb. 29, 2012 Mahalo for supporting Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Enjoy this free story! Read more Mahalo for reading the Honolulu Star-Advertiser! You're reading a premium story. Read the full story with our Print & Digital Subscription. Subscribe Now Read this story for free: Watch an ad or complete a survey Log In Already a subscriber? Log in now to continue reading this story. Activate Digital Account Print subscriber but without online access? Activate your Digital Account now. The Canadian Football League worked for Jeff Garcia and Warren Moon. It worked for Solomon Elimimian. It worked so well for Chad Owens that he decided to remain north of the border. What about Colt Brennan? Is it too late for the greatest player in University of Hawaii football history to restart his professional career, beginning in the CFL? Brennan has signed with the Saskatchewan Roughriders for the upcoming season. He will turn 29 late in the season. Canada would have been a great move for him two years ago; it’s still a good one now. Let’s say things go very well, and Brennan earns the starting job and shines in two seasons in the CFL. Would he be in demand for the NFL in 2014 at age 30? He would be considered old for a quarterback with no NFL regular-season experience, but it would not be out of the question for him to get a chance. Garcia was 29 and Moon was 27 when they took their skills back to the United States, to the San Francisco 49ers and the Houston Oilers. Both enjoyed long NFL careers; Garcia was even on the Houston Texans roster last season at age 41, and Moon played into his mid-40s and is in the Hall of Fame. Some will say it’s ludicrous to compare Brennan with these multiple Pro Bowl performers … one an all-time great and the other at least bordering on it. I just did it for the age similarity, and also as a reminder that a CFL apprenticeship can lead to great things. Elimimian — the extremely productive UH linebacker — went undrafted in 2009, dogged by a slow 40 time. But after two excellent seasons with the BC Lions, Elimimian has an NFL contract and an excellent chance to make the Minnesota Vikings roster this year. And Owens is an established CFL star as a kick returner for the Toronto Argonauts. Of course it’s different for quarterbacks, especially one who has never played in a regular-season professional game, and hasn’t even been in a preseason game since 2010. There was also the car accident that November and the ensuing rehab. Even before that, Brennan’s various injuries slowed his progress. Detractors say Brennan didn’t have NFL talent to begin with. But the consensus was that he did after the 2006 season, the one in which he threw 58 touchdowns and set a single-season record for passing efficiency. If Brennan had opted for the NFL Draft instead of returning to UH for his senior year he’d have been gone by the end of the second round. There’s no guarantee that he would have made it, but Brennan would have gotten a much more thorough look from the team that picked him that high than he did the next year as a sixth-round pick. Success as a college quarterback — even enough to make a player a Heisman Trophy finalist — doesn’t always transfer to the pro ranks, and Brennan’s acolytes seem to forget this. Likewise, his critics discount that many quarterbacks with less raw talent than Brennan have played in the NFL. Hopefully, Brennan can shake off the rust and put some of the long-standing what-ifs to rest, one way or the other — for himself and the fans. If he thrives and the NFL wants him in two years, he won’t be the first quarterback to come in from the cold. It might not be too late. Previous Story Prep Notebook Next Story Mayweather says Pacquiao 'not one of the sharpest'