Roughriders release American linebacker DeMarquis Gates

Photo courtesy: Minnesota Vikings

The Saskatchewan Roughriders have released American linebacker DeMarquis Gates.

The Riders recently signed import linebackers Larry Dean, Darnell Sankey and Derrick Moncrief during free agency.

The six-foot-two, 226-pound Gates signed with Saskatchewan in December 2020 after time in the NFL, XFL and Alliance of American Football. He played in five games during the CFL’s shortened 2021 regular season, recording five tackles and three special teams tackles for the green and white. 

Gates played in five games for the Houston Roughnecks where he collected 32 tackles, including three for a loss, the fifth most in the league, while also notching three quarterback hurries, three pass deflections, three fumble recoveries, two sacks, one interception and one forced fumble.

While with the Memphis Express, the 25-year-old led the AAF with 52 tackles and five forced fumbles through eight games. The undrafted Gates also had NFL stops with the Cleveland Browns (2018) and the Washington Football Team (2019).

In the NCAA, Gates was a defensive star at the University of Mississippi where he led the team in tackles for three straight seasons (2015-2017). As a senior, he started all 12 games at middle linebacker, making 114 tackles, 9.5 per game, third in the Southeastern Conference. His 70 solo tackles led the SEC and saw him ranked 13th nationally. Gates also collected two sacks, five quarterback hurries and one fumble recovery.

Over four SEC seasons, Gates amassed 282 total tackles, 163 solo, six sacks, four forced fumbles and one fumble recovery in 49 games played.