While Darian Durant was holding court in Montreal over his new contract, the Saskatchewan Roughriders made an announcement of their own.
Defensive lineman Willie Jefferson, who joined the club late in the 2016 season, has agreed to a contract that will keep him with the Riders.
“He has the ability to change the course of a game on every snap, as Riders fans witnessed over his short period with the team last year,” said Roughriders head coach and general manager Chris Jones in a release Friday morning.
“It was important for us to sign Willie to an extension and keep him with the Riders going forward,” he said.
In just five games, Jefferson proved himself to be an impact player – collecting three quarterback sacks and one forced fumble. But his addition was felt more than just in his ability to chase down a quarterback.
“I think now that Willie’s come in, he’s kind of settled us down a little bit,” defensive line coach Ed Philion said in October.
Jefferson spent his first two CFL seasons with the Edmonton Eskimos, picking up 43 defensive tackles and ten quarterback sacks in starting 16 of his 35 regular season games played.
He won his first career Grey Cup with the Eskimos in 2015.
Jefferson was set to be a free agent on Feb. 14.