The BC Lions have brought Khalif Mitchell back to the den. There is no doubt about the 2013All-Star’s talent on the field, but Mitchell has been suspended for his antics on the field and off.
Mitchell led the Argonauts with five sacks and had 32 tackles in his only season in Toronto.
He asked for and received his release from the double blue in March to pursue employment in the National Football League. Mitchell suggested some NFL teams wanted to see some consistency in his play in back to back seasons.
Leos VP of football operations and general manager Wally Buono said he could not find anyone with Mitchell’s skills at five free agent tryout camps in the United States.
The six-foot-six, 315-pound defensive tackle has signed for a year, plus an option.
“As I have said many times in the past, championships are won at the line of scrimmage and signing Khalif who is one of the most dominant linemen in our league will greatly strengthen our defence,” said Buono. “We’re confident that he is prepared to do whatever it takes to make us a championship organization on and off the field.”
Prior to his year with the Argos, Mitchell played three seasons with BC, accumulating 54 tackles and eight sacks. He was a member of the Lions 2011 Grey Cup winning squad.
In August of 2012, the now 29-year-old was fined and suspended for violating the CFL’s social media policy.
Also in 2012, the league shut down Mitchell for two games for hyper-extending the arm of Eskimos lineman Simeon Rottier at BC Place. Later in the season he was fined again for making throat slashing gestures in another contest with Edmonton.
Buono tweeted this message after the press release.
The BC Lions are confident that Khalif is prepared to do whatever it takes to make us a championship organization on and off the field!
“It’s wonderful to be back in the city that I fell in love with four years ago,” said Mitchell. “I am excited to begin a new chapter with the Lions and do my part to help win a championship for this organization and our fans.”
No word if the Argos are upset with Mitchell and the Leos for signing the player less than two months after his release. Both squads are owned by David Braley.
BC also released defensive back Lin-J Shell.