Hamilton Tiger-Cats bring back standout defensive back after western sojourn
Richard Leonard has come back to the ‘Cats, which means Hamilton will have the defensive-halfback duo that it boasted during a club-record 15-win season in 2019.
The Tiger-Cats announced on Tuesday (Feb. 8) that they have signed Leonard, who was a Canadian Football League all-star in Hamilton in ’19 before moving west to the Calgary Stapmeders. The 30-year-old Miami native played 13 games for Calgary last season, recording 25 defensive tackles, one tackle for loss, three pass knockdowns, one interception and one quarterback sack.
The five-foot-eight, 168-pound Leonard earned East Division all-star recognition twice in his first three CFL seasons with Hamilton from 2017 to ’19. In Hamilton, he will potentially reunite at D-half with fellow Miami native Cariel Brooks, who re-signed with Hamilton last week. Brooks was a CFL all-star last season.
Canadian veteran Tunde Adeleke, who also re-signed last month, started at defensive halfback during the Grey Cup, even though the position is usually filled by Americans. But Adeleke is a safety by trade and has been an East all-star in each of the last two seasons, along with being selected as the Tiger-Cats’ outstanding Canadian player in ’21.
Back like he never left ⚫️🟡#Ticats | #CFLFA | @trey4six pic.twitter.com/ZWe6fDahpR
— Hamilton Tiger-Cats (@Ticats) February 9, 2022
Black & Gold looks better, welcome back @trey4six!
We've re-signed 🇺🇸 DB Richard Leonard.
🗞 | https://t.co/y1n3qlt336#Ticats | #CFL | @InsuredWithMIB pic.twitter.com/t8bHWL3eSH
— Hamilton Tiger-Cats (@Ticats) February 8, 2022
Leonard has played 62 games across his four-season CFL career. All told, he has tallied 203 defensive tackles, one quarterback sack, 13 interceptions, three forced fumbles and two defensive touchdowns.
In 2016, Leonard had a look-see from the NFL’s Houston Texans. He played at Florida International, which is in his native Miami, from 2011 to ’15.insauga's Editorial Standards and Policies advertising