Hamilton Tiger-Cats bring back Canadian OL Alex Fontana, suspend two

Photo: Bob Butrym/3DownNation. All rights reserved.

The Hamilton Tiger-Cats have signed Canadian offensive lineman Alex Fontana and American placekicker Jonathan Garibay.

Fontana has rejoined the team after being released on May 8. He started at centre in Week 1 last year but was placed on Hamilton’s six-game injured list after suffering an injury to his knee. He started six games after returning to action before suffering another knee injury that caused him to miss the rest of the season.

The six-foot-two, 300-pound blocker chose not to return for the 2021 season despite being projected to start at centre for the Ottawa Redblacks. He became a free agent in February 2022 and signed a two-year contract with the Ticats.

The 28-year-old was selected with the seventh overall pick in the 2019 CFL Draft by the Redblacks. He dressed for 18 regular season games as a rookie in a backup role on veteran offensive line that included Canadian starters Mark Korte, Alex Mateas, Evan Johnson, Nolan MacMillan, and Jason Lauzon-Seguin.

The Toronto native played 27 games over four collegiate seasons with stints at Kansas (2018), Houston (2016-17), and the New Mexico Military Institute (2014-15).

Garibay signed with the Dallas Cowboys after going unselected in the 2022 NFL Draft but was released ahead of the regular season. The five-foot-eleven, 217-pound kicker dressed for 17 games over two seasons at Texas Tech University (2020-21) and made 23-of-27 field goal attempts (85.2 percent) with a long of 62 yards.

The Tiger-Cats also suspended American quarterback Jamie Newman and American defensive lineman McKinley Williams.

Newman dressed for 12 regular season games this past year and threw for 175 yards and one interception along with 20 carries for 83 yards and five touchdowns. The six-foot-four, 230-pound passer signed with the Philadelphia Eagles after going unselected in the 2021 NFL Draft following a collegiate career at Wake Forest and Georgia.