Riders sign American offensive linemen Lanard Bonner, Devon Johnson

The Saskatchewan Roughriders have signed American offensive linemen Lanard Bonner and Devon Johnson.

Bonner joins the Riders after signing with the Atlanta Falcons as an undrafted NFL free agent in April of 2019. The 23-year-old who checks in at six-foot-five, 315 pounds spent three NCAA seasons at Arkansas State University. A standout for the Red Wolves offensive line, Bonner was named first team All-Sun Belt Conference and became a two-time recipient of the Gary Withrow Award as his team’s most outstanding offensive lineman. 

In 2018, Bonner was a pre-season All-Sun Belt select, first team All-Sun Belt choice and ranked third on the “top 10” NFL talent list in the Sun Belt Conference. In 2017, the Alabama native started in all 12 games at right tackle for a team that ranked number one in the Sun Belt Conference in scoring offence, total offence, pass offence, third down conversions and first downs.  He was a vital part to the teams’ offensive success that ranked 10th in the nation in total offence and 13th in scoring offence. 

Johnson returns to the Riders after spending time on Saskatchewan’s practice roster in 2019. Prior to joining the Riders, the 24-year-old spent the spring with the Atlanta Falcons. Johnson attended Ferris State University, playing in four collegiate seasons for the Bulldogs. He stands six-foot-eight and weighs 330 pounds. 

Johnson made 51 consecutive starts and became the second FSU player ever to receive an invite to the NFL combine. During his time at FSU, he helped his team to two national quarterfinal appearances in 2016 and 2017 and was part of an offensive line that became national offensive leaders in scoring, rushing and total offence in 2015 and 2016. 

Johnson competed in the NFLPA Collegiate bowl as a two-time All-American. He was chosen as the GLIAC’s offensive lineman of the year, as well as a three-time All-GLIAC honouree and was a nominee for the 2018 Gene Upshaw Award.

The six-foot-eight, 320-pound Thaddeus Coleman started all 18 games for the Riders at right tackle last season; he’s a solid blocker, but turns 35 in June. Bonner and Johnson provide younger options for Saskatchewan as Coleman remains on the CFL free agent market.

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