November 21, 2018

Saying goodbye to Moe

Maurice Leggett (31) of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers during the game at New Mosaic Stadium in Regina, SK, Saturday, July 1st, 2017. (Photo: Johany Jutras)

EDMONTON – The Winnipeg Blue Bombers have already started to tinker with their roster in the wake of the loss in Sunday’s West Division Final. Veteran linebacker/defensive back Maurice Leggett was released by the team today, severing a five-year relationship with the club that dates back to the 2014 season.

“I would like to thank Moe for everything he has done for our football team, both on and off the field,” said Bombers GM Kyle Walters in a statement. “Over the course of his stay here, Moe made Winnipeg his home and endeared himself to the community. With the decision of moving on as an organization made, we felt releasing Moe now would give him more opportunity to explore other options. We thank Moe for the energy and enthusiasm he brought to the locker room, and we wish him nothing but success going forward.”

Leggett, who turned 32 last month, appeared in just nine games in 2018, starting eight. He attempted to return from an injury last month, but became tangled up in practice and had to be carted off the field. It was his last appearance on the football field this season.

That he returned to the field at all in 2018 was a testament to his work ethic. Last October, Leggett ruptured an Achilles tendon while fielding an onside kick and was lost for the remainder of the year. He returned to the team after training all winter and was shifted to defensive halfback at the start of the season, before moving back to his familiar outside linebacker spot. The Bombers loss in Calgary in late August was his last game in their colours.

Added Leggett in a statement:

“I would like to thank the city and the organization for five tremendous years. My family and I appreciate everyone that helped us make this an experience to remember. Winnipeg will still be a part of us. Thank you.”

Leggett’s contributions to the club and to the city were exemplary. He was twice named the Bombers Most Outstanding Defensive Player, in 2014 and 2016, and was a West Division All-Star in 2016. He was also named to the CFL Players’ Association All-Star Team twice, in 2016 and 2017.

Leggett joined the club in 2014 after a stint in the NFL, including being named the Kansas City Chiefs top rookie in 2008 – the first in franchise history the honour was bestowed upon an undrafted player. Leggett  played 72 games in with the Bombers and, in 2016, was just the second Blue Bomber to ever record three interception returns for touchdowns in a single season and just the second CFL player to accomplish the feat in 11 years.

The Bombers ended the season with Anthony Gaitor shining at the outside linebacker spot, and both he and Chandler Fenner – who also can play the position – are signed for the 2019 season.