TORONTO — After five CFL seasons, 88 regular season games and over 400 tackles, DS/LB Willie Pile has announced his retirement from the Canadian Football League. Pile played his entire career as a member of the Toronto Argonauts.
“As I turn the calendar page to the 32nd year of my life, I have also decided to turn a page on my career and retire from professional football. Although I have been preparing extremely hard for the opportunity to compete to hoist the Grey Cup in the great city of Toronto this season, the circumstances and the timing surrounding my decision have been very challenging. I am fully confident that this is the best decision for my family and I at this time,” said Pile.
“I want to thank my family, my wife and my son, my close friends, my mentors and all my teammates who supported me as I pursued my goal to play the game. I also want to thank the entire Toronto Argonauts organization, the Double Blue Argonauts fans, the city of Toronto, and the Canadian Football League for breathing new life into my football career and for embracing me as one of your own. I will now focus on being at home with my family and working with high performance high school, university and professional athletes to help them achieve their goals and dreams. I love this game and I will miss you all, God bless.”
While playing both linebacker and safety, Pile terrorized opposing offences with his quickness and agility.
The former East Division All-Star (2010) was also the Argos’ Outstanding Defensive Player in 2008 and was voted defensive captain by teammates in 2010 and 2011. For his career, he amassed 441 total tackles, 13 forced fumbles, 4 fumble recoveries and 12 interceptions.
Pile also played three playoff games for Toronto and was tremendous special teams contributor. Pile led the Double Blue in interception returns in 2009 and 2010, and also led the club in total tackles with 83 in 2008.
A fan favourite, Pile also had a tremendous impact away from the field. He was a regular at the fan club’s annual corn roast and could often be seen signing autographs and chatting with fans after practice or after game.
#10 was also an ambassador for the team’s Level the Playing Field program where he was assigned to Lester B. Pearson High School. He motivated the student athletes, helping to foster teamwork and school spirit, while also teaching them about the game of football.
Prior to his years in the CFL, Pile spent four years in the NFL playing 32 games with the Kansas City Chiefs and the Dallas Cowboys. He lives in Texas year-round with his wife Keia and their four-year old son, Jaylen.