B.C. Lions sign 2020 first overall CFL Draft pick, linebacker Jordan Williams

Photo courtesy: East Carolina Athletics

The B.C. Lions have signed the first overall pick from the 2020 CFL Draft, linebacker Jordan Williams.

The six-foot, 232-pound Williams signed a three-year contract through the 2023 season.

“I was honoured to have the Lions call my name in last year’s draft and now I can’t wait to get up to British Columbia and get this thing rolling,” Williams said in a statement.

“I know coach Rick Campbell and the entire staff has done a great job assembling a great group of talent. That has me even more excited to strap on the pads as soon as we can.”

Following a trade with Calgary moments before last year’s draft, Williams’ name was called as the first overall selection after a strong showing at the Ontario Regional Combine. It was in Toronto where Williams posted a 40-yard dash time of 4.48 seconds and a vertical jump of 39 inches.

The native of Fayetteville, North Carolina declared for the 2020 Draft after attending a free agent workout with the Ottawa Redblacks in 2019 where he was told of his Canadian eligibility. Williams’ mother Astra was born in Toronto and raised in Trinidad.

In 45 games over four seasons (2014-2017) at East Carolina University, Williams racked up 252 total tackles, 23 for a loss, three sacks, two forced fumbles, one interception and one fumble recovery.

Those efforts earned Williams an invite to 2018 mini-camp with the San Francisco 49ers. The hard-hitting defender spent part of 2020 with the Generals of The Spring League, helping the squad to a 3-0 record before play was halted due to COVID-19.