The B.C. Lions have signed kick returner Chris Rainey to a contract extension through the 2018 season.
The 28-year-old Rainey led the CFL with 2,945 combined yards last season and was third both punt and kick return yards. He returned two kicks for touchdowns while adding a receiving and a rushing score as well.
“Chris is an exciting and dynamic player who not only gives us instant field position on special teams, but also has the ability to score from just about anywhere on the field,” said general manager and head coach Wally Buono. “I know our fans will have a lot to cheer about in the future with Chris in the lineup.”
Rainey was named as a West Division All-Star and was the team’s Most Outstanding Special Teams Player.
Originally signed by the Montreal Alouettes in September of 2014 he played in five games before being released the following June. He signed with the Lions on Aug. 28, 2015.
Rainey was originally a fifth-round draft pick of the Steelers in 2012 but was cut after his rookie season just hours after being arrested for allegedly slapping his girlfriend. He later pleaded no contest to disorderly conduct and paid a fine. In 2010, Rainey was kicked off the team at Florida after he was arrested on a felony charge of aggravated stalking after allegedly sending threatening text messages to a woman he had been dating. He later pleaded guilty to a misdemeanour stalking charge.
Rainey expressed remorse for his actions in this remarkable profile by the Montreal Gazette;s Herb Zurkowsky in 2014, which also detailed his difficult upbringing.