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Toronto Argonauts Sign QB Chad Kelly To Three-Year Contract Extension

The Toronto Argonauts have announced that the club and superstar quarterback Chad Kelly have agreed to terms on a three-year contract extension. Kelly’s original two-year CFL contract was set to expire at season’s end. The extension guarantees that the defending Grey Cup Champions keep Kelly in Double Blue through the 2026 season, provided an NFL opportunity doesn’t arise down south.

Terms of the deal have not yet been disclosed.

*Update: Sources close to the team and player indicate that the three-year contract extension is worth $1.865 million.

Chad Kelly’s agreement is worth $615,000 in 2024 and $625,000 in hard money in 2025 and 2026.

Unlike Kelly’s current remaining year of his initial contract. Where the breakout CFL star can earn up to 333,000 in his contract. There are no performance based incentives in his new deal.

Kelly is due a $250,000 signing bonus in 2024.

Unless Chad Kelly signs an NFL contract during the CFL offseason.

Toronto Argonauts Sign Chad Kelly To A Three-Year Contract Extension

Chad Kelly, who played the role of hero leading the Toronto Argonauts off the bench to the franchise’s 18th Grey Cup championship back in November, has taken the entire CFL by storm in 2023.

As a first-time starter, Kelly leads the CFL in passer rating (118.7) and rushing touchdowns (six). The Ole Miss standout and Buffalo native has led the defending champion Argonauts to an 8-1 record this season. He has thrown for 2,402 yards, completing 70 percent of his passes while throwing for 16 touchdowns. Kelly has 22 scores in nine games this season.

With Kelly at the controls, Toronto’s offence has averaged 29.2 points and 380.9 yards per game.

The 29-year-old Kelly has matured as a quarterback and leader in Canada. Beloved by his teammates and coaches, Chad Kelly has begun fulfilling the promise of the stardom he showed in college. The Most Outstanding CFL Player candidate is once again shining under the bright lights.

The nephew of NFL legend Jim Kelly, the former Sugar Bowl MVP, Chad Kelly’s story in Canada has been one of great redemption. The great thing is that the story is not over; it’s just getting started in the CFL and will continue with the Toronto Argonauts.

“I couldn’t be happier to sign this extension and proudly represent the historic Double Blue,” said Chad Kelly. “Today marks not only a contract extension but an extension of my commitment to the amazing city of Toronto, my teammates, coaches, front office, and MLSE. I want to thank each one of you for your unwavering support over the last two years, and I look forward to leading this team to future Grey Cups. I also want to thank the Lord for providing me daily strength to do what I do best, my family for always being there for me throughout this process, and the team around me for making this all come together.

“The level of exhilaration on this day is only rivaled by the excitement Chad Kelly provides every time he takes the field!” said Boatmen General Manager Michael “Pinball” Clemons. “Today’s news is not just great for the Toronto Argonauts, it’s outstanding for our league. Not only has he played lights-out football, but he has seemed to raise the level of opposing quarterbacks we’ve faced. However, the greatest part of this story is what you don’t see. Mr. Kelly has led this team from the offseason back in the winter to a team that’s become a consistent winner. A competent voice, and a leader by example, he’s raised the level of his peers and prioritized the team amidst his All-Star stats! He arrives early and stays late…Phenomenal! On top of all that, Chad is, and will continue to be, a pillar for us in the team’s commitment to the community and youth football development in Toronto”.

“Chad’s play on the field and leadership off the field make him the perfect fit for us here in Toronto,” said Argos Head Coach Ryan Dinwiddie. “You’ve seen what he’s done so far this season, and we have no doubt the best is still yet to come with Chad. He is a player who can lead us to where we are trying to go, and that is to compete consistently for Grey Cups each year. We are beyond thrilled he is our guy going forward.” 

TORONTO ARGONAUTS SIGN CHAD KELLY AGREES TO A THREE-YEAR CONTRACT EXTENSION

TORONTO – The Toronto Argonauts announced today the club has agreed to a three-year contract extension with QB Chad Kelly.

Kelly, in his first year as a full-time starter in the CFL, is playing at a Most Outstanding Player level leading Toronto to an 8-1 record while topping the CFL in rushing touchdowns (six), QB rating (118.7), touchdown to interception ratio (2.29), percentage of drives that result in touchdowns (26.5) and percentage of completed passes over 20 yards (53.2). The Buffalo native has completed 149-of-213 passes (70%, second best in CFL) for 2,402 yards (fourth) and 16 passing touchdowns (third) in 2023. The Kelly-led Argos offense is averaging 29.2 offensive points/per game and 380.9 yards of offence/per game, both second in the CFL.

“I couldn’t be happier to sign this extension and proudly represent the historic Double Blue,” said Kelly. “Today marks not only a contract extension but an extension of my commitment to the amazing city of Toronto, my teammates, coaches, the front office, and MLSE. I want to thank each one of you for your unwavering support over the last two years, and I look forward to leading this team to future Grey Cups. I also want to thank the Lord for providing me daily strength to do what I do best, my family for always being there for me throughout this process, and the team around me for making this all come together.”

The 29-year-old joined the Argos in 2022 and was thrust into action during the fourth quarter of the 109th Grey Cup in November. Kelly would complete four of six passes for 43 yards and rush twice for 21 yards, including a 20-yard scramble on second down to set up the Argos’ game-winning touchdown and help Toronto secure its record 18th championship. The second-year CFLer was an offensive assistant coach at East Mississippi Community College in 2021 after stops in Indianapolis and Denver in the NFL between 2017-2020. He was selected in the seventh round of the 2017 NFL Draft. After starting his collegiate career at Clemson, Kelly transferred to East Mississippi CC, where he led the Lions to a National Championship before eventually finding a home at The University of Mississippi, where he would throw for just under 7,000 yards and 50 touchdowns while rushing for 958 yards and 15 more majors in two seasons for the Rebels.

“The level of exhilaration on this day is only rivaled by the excitement Chad Kelly provides every time he takes the field!” said Boatmen General Manager Michael “Pinball” Clemons. “Today’s news is not just great for the Toronto Argonauts, it’s outstanding for our league. Not only has he played lights-out football, but he has seemed to raise the level of opposing quarterbacks we’ve faced. However, the greatest part of this story is what you don’t see. Mr. Kelly has led this team from the offseason back in the winter to a team that’s become a consistent winner. A competent voice, and a leader by example, he’s raised the level of his peers and prioritized the team amidst his All-Star stats! He arrives early and stays late…Phenomenal! On top of all that, Chad is, and will continue to be, a pillar for us in the team’s commitment to the community and youth football development in Toronto”

“Chad’s play on the field and leadership off the field make him the perfect fit for us here in Toronto,” said Argos Head Coach Ryan Dinwiddie. “You’ve seen what he’s done so far this season, and we have no doubt the best is still yet to come with Chad. He is a player who can lead us to where we are trying to go, and that is to compete consistently for Grey Cups each year. We are beyond thrilled he is our guy going forward.” 

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Mike Mitchell Reporter
1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. David Tress

    August 31, 2023 at 3:21 pm

    Chad Kelly deserves to be the highest paid player in the CFL at this moment in time. However, Nathan Rourke could have signed a contract extension for just as much if he would have stayed in the CFL. Now Rourke is destined for the practice squads and could become but a footnote in football history.

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