- Updated: February 15, 2017
Making off-season news isn’t necessarily new for the BC Lions, but this time they are announcing they are dipping into the free agency market less than an hour into the free agent time period by signing (DB) Buddy Jackson to a one-year contract.
He (Jackson) played last season with the Saskatchewan Roughriders in only six games managing 21 tackles.
GM/head coach Wally Buono stated “Buddy is a key veteran addition to our secondary and he’s a physical defender with good size and range and we expect him to be a playmaker on defence this year.”
This signing clearly addresses a strong need for BC as it was only last week that they released veteran DB Ryan Phillips.
He (Jackson) also spent parts of three seasons with the Stampeders prior to his signing in 2015 with the NFL Dallas Cowboys.
In addition to this signing the Lions also signed linebacker Tony Burnett (6’1” 210lbs) to a one-year deal.
Burnett had a total of 31 tackles and 19 special-teams tackles last season while playing with the Blue Bombers.
Another huge signing for the Lions was that of veteran Canadian receiver Marco Iannuzzi, D-back Ronnie Yell and D-lineman Mic’hael Brooks to contract extensions.
Ensuring they are locked-up they extended the contracts of Iannuzzi and Brooks through to the 2018 season, but Yell’s contract was for 2017 only.
It is interesting to note that all were eligible to become free agents at noon (ET) February 14th.
“Marco is an important and underrated part of our offence who we can count on to give us consistent performances,” Buono said. “His ability to contribute on offence and on special teams makes this signing a very important one for the club.”
The Calgary native has spent seven seasons with B.C. Last year, he registered career highs in receiving yards (360), punt returns (22) and punt return yards (232).
In 98 career games with B.C., Iannuzzi has 107 catches for 1,237 yards and eight touchdowns.
Brooks has appeared in 28 games over two seasons with B.C., registering 62 tackles and four sacks.
Yell will return for his fourth season with B.C., having made 43 career starts. He has amassed 104 tackles and four interceptions, three of which have been returned for TDs.