The Edmonton Elks have chosen to start Kai Locksley at quarterback for the team’s preseason opener against the Calgary Stampeders on Monday.
The six-foot-four, 210-pounder dressed for 16 regular season games with the Elks in 2022 and made 12 starts at slotback. He recorded 17 receptions for 247 yards, 48 carries for 117 yards and seven touchdowns, and completed five-of-eight pass attempts for 50 yards.
The 26-year-old originally committed to the University of Texas where he was converted to receiver. He returned to the quarterback position following a transfer to the The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) and threw for 2,266 yards, nine touchdowns, and 14 interceptions while rushing for 875 yards and 11 touchdowns.
Locksley’s lone NFL stint came with the Miami Dolphins in 2021, where he came close to making the final roster as a receiver. He will be backed up by first-time CFL quarterback Jarret Doege and Khalil Tate, who had brief stints with Edmonton and Toronto last season.
Incumbent starter Taylor Cornelius will not dress for the game, nor will first-round 2022 CFL Draft pick Tre Ford. Cornelius threw for 2,768 yards, 11 touchdowns, and nine interceptions this past season, while Ford threw for 451 yards, two touchdowns, and five interceptions as a rookie.
Other established players who will not dress include Kevin Brown, Eugene Lewis, Emmanuel Arceneaux, Steven Dunbar Jr., Dillon Mitchell, Kyran Moore, Jake Ceresna, A.C. Leonard, J-Min Pelley, Adam Konar, Ed Gainey, Aaron Grymes, Scott Hutter, and Loucheiz Purifoy.
The Elks will also start a pair of 2023 CFL Draft picks in linebacker Michael Brodrique (first round, Université de Montreal) and safety Jake Taylor (second round, University of Alberta). Former NFL receiver Sammie Coates, who spent the past two years on the Saskatchewan Roughriders’ suspended list, will start at slotback.
Monday’s preseason game between the Elks and Stampeders is scheduled for 4:00 p.m. EDT at McMahon Stadium in Calgary.