The Argos today announced the addition of two players to their defense. Toronto has signed a familiar face in former Argonauts LB Justin Tuggle and a new one in former NFL/XFL defensive back Jalen Collins.
Justin Tuggle, the son of former NFL All-Pro linebacker Jessie Tuggle, returns to the Boatmen after spending time most recently in the CFL with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Edmonton Elks. Justin Tuggle arrives at a time when Toronto has two key players at linebacker, injured in starters Henoc Muamba (hamstring) and Cameron Judge (foot sprain).
Tuggle has experience playing multiple positions. He can play outside and middle linebacker, and has the flexibility to play on the edge as an outside pass rusher. Tuggle has six career sacks in the CFL and was a part of Toronto’s last championship team in 2017.
This is Jalen Collins first entry into the CFL, after playing five seasons in the NFL with the Atlanta Falcons and Indianapolis Colts. The former 2015 second-round pick out of LSU, most recently played in the XFL with the Los Angeles Wildcats and Tampa Bay Vipers.
Collins, at 6’1 203, with 4.4 speed, and still only 28 years old, has the ability to play multiple positions in the Argos secondary. He can play corner or safety and he also might project to the Sam linebacker position in the CFL. Collins has a very similar skillset to current Boatmen standout Chris Edwards.
Collins hasn’t reached his pro potential since being a standout at LSU. Mostly because of off-the-field issues. Collins has been suspended by the NFL on multiple occasions for violating their substance abuse policy. At this stage of his career, if he has straightened things out off the field, the Argos might have quite a find on their hands. Talent has never been the issue with Jalen Collins.
It will be interesting to see how these two players transition into Chris Jones’s defense in the second half of the season. The Argonauts (4-3) are currently on their bye week. They will host the Ottawa Redblacks at BMO Field this coming Wednesday night.
Toronto’s PR department released this statement to the media on today’s signings.
ARGOS ADD AMERICAN LB JUSTIN TUGGLE AND AMERICAN DB JALEN COLLINS
TORONTO – The Toronto Argonauts Football Club announced today they have signed American LB Justin Tuggle and American DB Jalen Collins.
Tuggle, 31, returns to Toronto after spending two seasons with the Double Blue from 2017-2018, winning a Grey Cup in 2017, while playing 35 games and recording 94 defensive tackles, 17 special teams tackles, six sacks, and three forced fumbles. The 6’3, 247lb linebacker spent 2019 with Hamilton where he would tally 80 defensive tackles, one sack, and one interception over 18 games, helping the Ticats reach the Grey Cup that season. The Kansas State alum played three seasons with the Houston Texans from 2013-2015, racking up 67 tackles, one interception, and one forced fumble in 42 games before a brief stint with Cleveland in 2016.
Collins, 28, was drafted in the second round of the 2015 NFL Draft by the Atlanta Falcons and suited up for 24 games over two seasons for the NFC South team, tallying 48 tackles and two interceptions. The Mississippi native had a team-high 11 total tackles in Super Bowl LI, an eventual loss to the New England Patriots in February of 2017. The 6’1, 203lb defensive back would go on to spend time with the Indianapolis Colts, Los Angeles Wildcats (XFL), and Tampa Bay Vipers (XFL) between 2018 and 2019. The LSU alum played 32 games over three seasons (2012-2014) for the Tigers racking up 90 tackles and three interceptions.
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