Riders retain Mike Edem one of the most versatile Canadians in the CFL

The Riders have re-signed Mike Edem who is among the most versatile Canadian defenders in the CFL.

The 29-year-old was a pending free agent.

Edem produced a career-best 61 tackles, two for loss and two interceptions while starting every game for Saskatchewan last season. He played a number of different positions, lining up at safety – making all the checks in the back end – strong-side linebacker, weakside linebacker, halfback and, in certain packages, middle linebacker. The University of Calgary Dinos product has been a key part of the Riders defence since being acquired in a May 2017 trade for a conditional draft pick.

The Montreal Alouettes originally selected Edem in third overall in the 2013 CFL draft. He earned a CFL East all-star selecting after his rookie season. Through six CFL seasons, Edem has recorded 170 tackles, 50 special teams stops, eight interceptions, five sacks and four forced fumbles.

Edem has 4.50 speed, size and plays a physical brand of football. By signing Edem to an extension through 2020 the Riders solidify an important defensive starter that allows the defence to mix looks and keep offences guessing, a large part of what made the Chris Jones schemes successful and stingy.

Canadian depth was an issue at times for the Riders in 2018 making Edem’s signing even more important. If injuries hit nationals on defence Edem could play in a variety of spots giving Saskatchewan multiple ratio options.

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