The Argos front office is staying active, re-signing another key player to their offensive line in Shane Richards. With less than two months away from CFL free agency, Toronto has locked in their offensive line for the upcoming season.
A week ago, the Boatmen also announced that they had extended standout starting guard Dariusz Bladek.
Very quietly, after battling injuries in his rookie campaign, Shane Richards, the 2019 first-round pick from Calgary, revitalized his CFL career in 2021 by rededicating himself to a new conditioning program. Richards, a jumbo-sized offensive tackle prospect out of Oklahoma State, became one of the best role players in the trenches for Double Blue this past season.
The Argonauts encountered several injuries to key players upfront during last season. And it was Shane Richards who stepped up to play in the interior at guard when Philip Blake, Peter NiCastro, and Dariusz Bladek all missed games. Richards performed so well at guard that when injuries occurred at offensive tackle, the team’s coaching staff kept him on the inside.
In a longer upcoming season in 2022, the versatility that Richards showed in his second year in Canada will be worth its weight in gold.
Toronto Offensive Line coach Stephen McAdoo deserves a lot of credit for his work with the Boatmen last season. ‘Coach Mac’ returned to the Six last year after winning a Grey Cup with the Argos back in 2012. And in 2021, he was instrumental in helping guide rookie Centre Peter Nicastro to a phenomenal debut season in the CFL.
Coach Mac will have his entire offensive line group back next season to work with again. Double Blue returns its starting lineup from 2021, along with Shane Richards, another player he helped develop a season ago.
One of the benefits to the Argos’ quality offensive line is their roster configuration. Five of the team’s top six offensive linemen are National players—a significant benefit for teams in the CFL when it comes to fulfilling the ratio.
The question now becomes who will be playing the pivot for Toronto behind that offensive line in 2022.
McLeod Bethel-Thompson is slated to become a free agent in February, and the team could bring him back. However, some other potential high-profile CFL quarterbacks could hit free agency like Jeremiah Masoli and Argos East Final killer Dane Evans.
The latest re-signings by Toronto whittles down the team’s long list of pending free agents. In case you missed it, on Monday, the Argos announced that they would be parting ways with future Hall Of Fame DE Charleston Hughes.
Today, Charleston Hughes took to social media to comment on him and the Argos parting ways.
The Boatmen’s front office, led by GM Michael Clemons, Director of Scouting Vince Magri, Football Ops Manager Alex Russell and company still have a lot of heavy lifting to do. As the Boatmen navigate towards the open waters of free agency.
Below is an updated list of the Argos’ impending free agents.
Argos 2022 Free Agent List
|BETHEL-THOMPSON, Mcleod||A||QB||Sacramento State|
|BOATENG, Matthew*||N||DB||Fresno State|
|BRESCACIN, Juwan*||N||WR||Northern Illinois|
|COLLINS JR., Ricky||A||WR||Texas A&M Commerce|
|DANIEL, Robertson||A||DB||Brigham Young|
|DANIELS, DaVaris||A||WR||Notre Dame|
|GLENN, Cameron||A||DB||Wake Forest|
|LAW, Cordarro||A||DL||Southern Mississippi|
|MCCOIL SR., Dexter||A||LB||Tulsa|
|MUAMBA, Henoc*||N||LB||St. Francis Xavier|
|NEVIS, Drake||A||DL||Louisiana State|
|RICHARDS, Jeff||A||DB||Emporia State|
|ROGERS, Eric||A||WR||California Lutheran|
|TUGGLE, Justin||A||DL||Kansas State|
Below is the Toronto Argonauts press release on the re-signing of Shane Richards.
The Argos Extend OL Shane Richards
TORONTO – The Toronto Argonauts announced that the team has extended Canadian OL Shane Richards today.
Richards, 26, played all 14 games for the 9-5 Boatmen during the 2021 season, his second year in the CFL. The 6’8, 325lb lineman from Calgary was Toronto’s first overall selection in the 2019 CFL Draft. He played in eight games his rookie season after an injury sidelined him for most of the season. The Jamaican-born Richards played three seasons of collegiate football at Oklahoma State from 2016-2018.
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