Redblacks sign another kicker, add Sergio Castillo

Kicker Sergio Castillo has signed with Ottawa Redblacks, per sources.

Castillo played last season with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats but tore his ACL last October in a 30-13 win over the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, going down as he covered a missed field goal. The injury typically takes at least a year to recover from – it’s Castillo’s plant leg – and the Ticats signed Canadian Lirim Hajrullahu as a replacement in free agency.

Castillo won the kicking job in Ticat training camp last spring after bouncing around the fringes of the CFL for three seasons. He made the most of it, hitting on 29 of 34 field goals (85.3 per cent) and going five-for-five from beyond the 50 yard line. The Ticats released Castillo in February.

Ottawa seems intent on having a kicking competition in training camp. It was reported earlier on Monday that the Redblacks have also signed Richie Leone to a one-year deal. Leone, a two-time CFL all-star punter, led the three-down league in punting average in 2015 and 2016 (49.5 and 49.3). He saw time as a field goal kicker with B.C. too, hitting 65-of-90 three-pointers (72.2 per cent).

The team is in the market for a kicker after Brett Maher, who handled all three jobs last season, signed with the Dallas Cowboys last week.

Drew Edwards

Drew Edwards

Drew Edwards is into his eighth season covering the CFL and the Ticats for the Hamilton Spectator. He is the founder and editor of 3DownNation.
Drew Edwards
Drew Edwards
About Drew Edwards (1570 Articles)
Drew Edwards is into his eighth season covering the CFL and the Ticats for the Hamilton Spectator. He is the founder and editor of 3DownNation.

6 Comments on Redblacks sign another kicker, add Sergio Castillo

  1. I’m not sure how signing Castillo is going to give them a training camp kicking competition since it’ll be at LEAST September (and likely later) before he can think about competitively kicking. They’re going to have to bring in at least one more kicker to have any kind of kicking batter before the season begins.

    • MJ Bandit // April 9, 2018 at 8:58 pm //

      The RedBlacks have signed former GGs kicker Lewis Ward – who put up 80% plus FG accuracy his last 2 seasons in CIS ball (very good number for college ball). Maybe he can win the place-kicker job with a good TC and combine with Leone as the punter; then if Castillo returns healthy, maybe he claims the job, or maybe not. I wouldn’t count on Leone as the only/dual kicker with his questionable FG accuracy.

    • The ACL injury was to his plant leg not his kicking leg.
      It’s likely that he will be kicking in training camp.

      • I don’t think it’s that likely. The kicker needs to have stability in the plant leg to be able to apply the full force of the kicking leg, and support his weight while in the kicking motion. Plus he needs to be able to position himself correctly in the steps leading up to a placekick or punt, and run once a kick is made. Without a healed and strong ACL the stability isn’t there, and there’s also a risk of hyper-extension (which could happen on any type of kick).

        I think this signing is “future considerations.” If the team has a hard time finding a steady kicker earlier in the season, Castillo has proven ability that may provide the RBs with a good kicking option into the playoffs if he’s ready to go later in the year.

        • It sounds like that he could be kicking by Sept? Signing him keeps him off other teams roster. The two Canadians will get a chance to go up against Leone at the mini-camp in a couple of weeks.

  2. Castillo a good guy and dedicated pro. Worth waiting on in my opinion when he recovers 100% from his injury and surgery. A lot of good kickers out there from both sides of the border. A real challenge finding one that can do ALL 3 kicking jobs – kick offs, punting and FGs – in a excellent manner.

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