Als and Argos Make a Deal
CFL

Posted Jan 3, 2007


The Toronto Argonauts Football Club acquired non-import defensive back Richard Karikari in a trade with the Montreal Alouettes. In exchange, import receiver/kick returner Keith Stokes will go to the Als.

Raised in Pickering, Ontario, Richard Karikari returns home after spending the past four seasons as a standout in the defensive secondary with the Montreal Alouettes. His best season was in 2005 when he was named a CFL All-Star and East Division All-Star at safety. Karikari started 18 games that year for the Als and finished second in the league in interceptions with nine, including 188 interception return yards. The 27 year old has already played in two Grey Cup Championships, once as a starter.

 

Remarked the newest Argo, Richard Karikari, “This is exciting; I work at kids’ football camps throughout the year and this is an opportunity for those kids to see me in a hometown uniform. I always told my parents that I wanted to play for the Argos and this is my chance. Toronto has played Montreal in the past five East Championships and this is a great opportunity to help get the team over that hump and win another Grey Cup.”

 

Karikari was originally drafted by Montreal in the second round (14th Overall) of the 2003 CFL Canadian Draft out of St. FX University. In 2002, he was a runner-up for the Hec Creighton award as the nation’s top CIS football player, was named the AUS Most Outstanding Player and was named a CIS All-Canadian.

 

Stokes had two very productive seasons with the Alouettes in 2002 and 2003, as he set several records on kick returns. In 2002, he returned 25 kickoffs for gains of 527 yards and 76 punts for gains of 896 yards and three touchdowns. He also caught 43 passes for 572 yards and three touchdowns. He was named East Division rookie of the year and top special teams player.

 

In 2003, he returned 23 kickoffs for 455 yards and 60 punts for 539 yards and a touchdown. In these last two years, he also returned 16 missed field goals for 861 yards (avg. 53.8 yards per return) including two for 115-yard scores. He added 429 yards on 33 pass receptions.

 

He was then traded to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers where he had two excellent seasons. In 2004, he was named on the CFL All-Star team and was the CFL’s Most Outstanding Special Team Player. He had his best year as a receiver in 2005 with 58 catches for 832 yards and three touchdowns.

 

In 2006, Stokes caught 20 passes for 253 yards with the Toronto Argonauts.



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