Marcus Crandell had the Riders at 6-2 into the halfway mark, but two tough outings in a row cost him a job. ((Jeff McIntosh/Canadian Press))

Marcus Crandell was officially released by the Saskatchewan Roughriders on Thursday, but his exit had been obvious all week.

The veteran quarterback, who was 3-2 as a starter but fell out of favour with two recent losses, became expendable after the club acquired Michael Bishop from Toronto on Saturday.

"After numerous discussions around the league, we officially released Marcus this afternoon," said Eric Tillman, Saskatchewan's general manager. "This is a painful day because of our affection for Marcus, who is certainly a class act."

Crandell, 34, was 67-of-128 passing for 924 yards — 10th best in an eight-team league — with seven touchdowns against three interceptions.

"We did everything humanly possible to trade Marcus, which would have allowed him to play under the conditions of his contract with us," Tillman said.

"Unfortunately, we weren't able to make that happen."

With files from the Canadian Press