B.C. Lions sign 2015 draft pick, nine-year NFL veteran Christian Covington

Photo courtesy: Los Angeles Chargers

The B.C. Lions have signed Canadian defensive lineman Christian Covington following a nine-year run in the NFL.

The six-foot-two, 302-pound native of Vancouver was a sixth-round pick in the 2015 NFL Draft out of Rice University and spent nine years down south, dressing for 102 games as a member of the Houston Texans, Dallas Cowboys, Cincinnati Bengals, and Los Angeles Chargers. He recorded 196 total tackles, 19 tackles for loss, 9.5 sacks, two forced fumbles, and two pass knockdowns.

“It’s truly an honour to come home and play in front of my friends and family,” Covington said in a statement. “I’ve continued to follow the Lions throughout my professional career and it gives me great excitement to join the team at a pivotal time in franchise history. We all understand and embrace the goal of bringing the Grey Cup back home.”

According to Spotrac, Covington made $8.65 million USD over the course of his NFL career.

B.C. has held the defensive tackle’s CFL rights since he was selected in the fifth round of the 2015 CFL Draft. He is the son of Canadian Football Hall of Fame inductee and all-time sack leader Grover Covington, who played for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats from 1981 to 1991.

The 30-year-old attended Vancouver College for high school, whose alumni also includes Bryan Chiu, Peter Dyakowski, Kevin Eiben, Adam Konar, Cal Murphy, and Angus Reid. He helped the school win the B.C. high school provincial championship in 2010 and was named the provincial defensive Most Valuable Player.

The Lions will open their 2024 regular season on Sunday, June 9 when they visit the Toronto Argonauts at BMO Field.