Edmonton Elks trade disgruntled LB Kevin Francis to Ottawa Redblacks

Photo courtesy: Jeff Vinnick/BC Lions

The Edmonton Elks have traded disgruntled Canadian linebacker Kevin Francis to the Ottawa Redblacks in exchange for a fourth-round pick in the 2024 CFL Draft.

The six-foot-five, 210-pound defender signed with the Elks as a free agent in February but asked to be traded or released from the team the following month due to a contract dispute. He never reported to Edmonton and was added to the team’s suspended list at the start of training camp.

Francis spent last season with the B.C. Lions and made a career-high 22 special teams tackles. He has appeared in 82 CFL regular season games and made 61 special teams tackles, 18 defensive tackles, and two forced fumbles.

The 30-year-old native of Toronto was a supplemental draft choice of the Saskatchewan Roughriders in 2016 out of North Carolina A&T. He spent three years with the club before signing with the Ottawa Redblacks in 2019. He returned to the Riders as a free agent in 2021 before departing for the B.C. Lions.

The Elks (0-4) are scheduled to visit the Saskatchewan Roughriders (2-1) on Thursday, July 6, while the Redblacks (1-2) will visit the Hamilton Tiger-Cats (0-3) on Saturday, July 8.