Monday, January 19, 2015
Calgary Stampeders head coach and general manager John Hufnagel is pleased to announce international quarterback Drew Tate has signed a contract extension. As per team policy, terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
Tate, an eight-year veteran who has spent six seasons with the Stampeders, led the CFL in 2014 with 10 rushing touchdowns. Serving as Calgary’s short-yardage quarterback, he scored two majors in the Stamps’ 20-16 victory over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in the Grey Cup game.
The 30-year-old Texan made four starts during the 2014 regular season and led the Stamps to three victories including back-to-back wins over West Division rivals BC in Week 14 and Saskatchewan in Week 15.
For the season, Tate completed 66 of 111 passes for 823 yards and five touchdowns. He carried the ball 42 times for 129 yards and 10 scores.
“Drew has performed very well for us when he was on the field,” said Hufnagel. “Drew and Bo Levi Mitchell are important players for us regardless of who was named the starter and that certainly proved to be the case in 2014. It’s very important in the CFL to have quality and depth at the quarterback position and so I’m very pleased with Drew’s decision to make this commitment to the Stampeders.”
After two seasons with the Saskatchewan Roughriders in which he did not see any action, Tate signed with the Stampeders in 2009. In 75 career regular-season games for the Stamps, he has completed 325 of 492 passes (a 66.1-per cent completion rate) for 4,093 yards and 29 touchdowns. He has 148 career rushes for 595 yards and 23 touchdowns.
“It’s been an honour and a privilege to represent the white horse for the past six years and I’m very happy to have the chance to continue to do so,” said Tate. “Winning a Grey Cup with this group of guys last year was a dream come true and I am stoked to get back at it and try to do it again.”
In another transaction, the Stampeders have released international defensive lineman Shawn Lemon in order to allow him to sign a contract with a National Football League club.
Lemon was scheduled to become a free agent on Feb. 10.
“Shawn has an agreement in place with an NFL club and we are granting him his release in order to allow him to sign a contract immediately rather than waiting until February,” said Hufnagel. “We wish Shawn the best of luck and thank him for his contributions to the Stampeders.”
Lemon led the Stampeders with 13 sacks in 2014 and he tied the CFL single-season record with eight forced fumbles. He had 31 tackles, including five tackles for loss, and one interception.
The Montreal Alouettes announced on Monday that Kavis Reed has been appointed the team's new special teams coordinator.
Reed, who played five seasons in the CFL between 1995 and 1999, has 13 seasons of coaching experience North of the border, including three as the Edmonton Eskimos head coach from 2011 to 2013. In his first season as the Eskimos head coach, he led the team to an 11-7 season and a second place finish as well as a Western Final berth. The team had only won seven games the previous year and Reed was named a coach of the year finalist.
"It's an honour for me to join such a storied organization that has had so much success over the years," said Reed. "I look forward to working with Jim Popp, Tom Higgins, our coaches and all the players. This team showed a lot of promise last year and we will work hard to keep pushing in that same direction."
In 2010, Reed was the Winnipeg Blue Bombers defensive coordinator and his unit was the best in the league against the pass and second best in total defence. The previous year, he was the Saskatchewan Roughriders special teams coordinator and defensive backs coach, helping the team reach the Grey Cup.
"Having Kavis on our coaching staff is a great addition for the Alouettes," declared Alouettes head coach, Tom Higgins. "He brings fire and passion to our team, as well as plenty of experience to our staff in place. All of our coaches are excited to get to work with him."
The Georgetown, SC native began his CFL coaching career as the Toronto Argonauts special teams coordinator and defensive backs coach. Reed, who is now 41, then coached the defensive backs with the Ottawa Renegades (2002-2003) before becoming the Hamilton Tiger-Cats defensive coordinator (2004-2006). He was a defensive assistant coach with the Toronto Argonauts in 2007 before being named their defensive coordinator the following season.