June 22, 2021

Derek Dennis announces he will not play in 2021

Johany Jutras/CFL.ca

EDMONTON — Just about a month before training camp begins, former CFL Most Outstanding Lineman Derek Dennis has announced that he will be sitting out of the 2021 campaign.

Dennis stated on Tuesday via his Twitter account that he is not retiring from football, but rather taking the year off to take care of his family.

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“Writing this is not easy and def something I didn’t foresee happening,” he said in a series of tweets. “But football no longer provides the opportunity to be able to care for my family properly in all facets so for that reason I will not be playing in the upcoming season. I appreciate Edmonton for the opportunity to continue my career but I wouldn’t be a man of my word if family didn’t come first. I am not retiring just taking an extended break to care for my two young children and significant other as best as I can!”

Dennis signed a two-year deal with the Edmonton Elks earlier this year.

The 32-year-old originally entered the CFL with the Calgary Stampeders in 2015 after NFL stints with the Miami Dolphins, New England Patriots, Chicago Bears and Carolina Panthers – as well as the Arizona Rattlers of the AFL. The Temple product has played in 72 games during his five-year CFL career.

Since joining the league, Dennis has been regarded as one of the best offensive linemen in the CFL. In his first full season of Canadian football, Dennis was named both a CFL All-Star, and the 2016 CFL Most Outstanding Lineman. He is a three-time West Division All-Star (2016, 2018, 2019) and was a Grey Cup Champion in 2018.

Dennis played four of his five CFL seasons with the Calgary Stampeders. He spent the 2017 season with the Saskatchewan Roughriders.

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