Ottawa Redblacks sign former NFL DL Gerald Willis III, release five

Photo: AP/Alex Brandon

The Ottawa Redblacks have signed American defensive lineman Gerald Willis III and American defensive back Tywan Francis.

Willis most recently played for the Orlando Guardians of the XFL, recording 24 total tackles and two sacks over 10 games in 2023. The six-foot-two, 300-pound defender originally signed with the Baltimore Ravens as an undrafted free agent in 2019 and later dressed for two games with the Miami Dolphins. The native of New Orleans, La. is the younger brother of former All-Pro NFL safety Landon Collins.

Francis finished his collegiate career at Temple University this past season where he made 78 total tackles, six tackles for loss, seven pass knockdowns, and two interceptions. The five-foot-eleven, 195-pound native of New Orleans, La. played the first five seasons of his collegiate career at Colorado State University where he made 176 total tackles, five tackles for loss, 10 pass knockdowns, two forced fumbles, one sack, and one fumble recovery.

The Redblacks have also released American receiver Dillon Stoner, American defensive linemen Jamare Edwards and Jermaine McDaniel, American defensive back Kalon Gervin, and Canadian kicker Michael Domagala.

Ottawa will play its second and final preseason game on Friday, May 31 when they host the Montreal Alouettes at 7:00 p.m. EDT.