Fan favourite and longtime Ticats’ Canadian OL Mike Filer retires from the CFL

After nine years and eight seasons with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, Canadian offensive lineman Mike Filer has decided to retire from the CFL.

Filer was attending 2021 training camp with the Tiger-Cats after re-signing with the team May 28.

“Today is one of the hardest days of my life. After nine years in the CFL with the Tiger-Cats, it is time for me to listen to my body and heart and hang up my cleats for the last time. Football has instilled life skills and core values in me that define who I am.

I want to thank so many people, including Bob Young and Scott Mitchell for running a first class organization and their endless support to not only me, but all of our players in Hamilton. Drew Allemang and Shawn Burke for believing in a 20-year-old kid from Brantford that grew up dreaming of playing for the Tiger-Cats. Thank you to Coach O for his continued support and guidance, and all my past coaches for their time and commitment to helping me grow.

My brothers (teammates) who were the main reason I came to work every day. We grew up together, played through pain together and will forever share memories of glory and heartbreak.

To my wife Jen, son Dax, father Greg and late mother Kim – my biggest fans – thank you for allowing me to chase my dreams. I love you.

And finally, to the greatest fans in the CFL, thank you TigerTown! I still get shivers thinking about running out of the tunnel at Tim Hortons Field and hearing your roar. I also loved my time off the field in the community and am grateful for everyone I crossed paths with. Thank you, Hamilton, for allowing me to be a part of it all.”

Over his eight-season CFL playing career with the Ticats (2012-2020), Filer appeared in 112 regular season games with 95 starts at centre. In addition, the six-foot-two, 290-pound native of Brantford, Ontario started nine playoff games at centre for Hamilton, including the 102nd and 107th Grey Cup games. He was also Hamilton’s 2019 nominee for the CFL’s Jake Gaudaur Veterans’ Award.

“Summing up Mike Filer in a few sentences is a disservice, but when I think about Mike I think about high character, perseverance, dependability, and leadership. You knew you had a person that was going to put in the time and effort to be ready to play every week,” head coach Orlondo Steinauer said.

“Since 2012, people like Mike have been helping us build our foundation in Hamilton. Congratulations, Mike, on an outstanding career, and we wish you and your family all the best in life after football.”

Filer was originally selected in the fifth round, 31st overall, in the 2012 CFL Draft by the Calgary Stampeders. He was signed by Hamilton on August 12, 2012 after being released by Calgary. Prior to turning pro, he played four years at Mount Allison University (2008-2011) where he was named an Atlantic University Sport all-star and CIS second-team All-Canadian in 2010, and was twice named the Mounties’ Lineman of the Year. Filer also suited up in the 2010 CIS East-West Bowl.

“Mike’s tireless work ethic on the football field and in the Hamilton community throughout his career is a perfect example of what it means to be a Tiger-Cat,” senior director of player personnel Shawn Burke said.

“For nearly a decade, he helped mold the identity of our football team both on and off the field. We congratulate Mike on a great career and wish him success in whatever comes next.”

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