Saskatchewan Roughriders receiver Jeremy Kelley retires

The Saskatchewan Roughriders have lost another player to an off-season retirement.

International wide receiver Jeremy Kelley has informed the Riders that he won’t be able to attend training camp due to an undisclosed medical issue. The Riders announced Tuesday that Kelley has been placed on the CFL’s retired list.

Kelley is the fourth Rider to retire this off-season. International receiver Maurice Price, who was acquired from the Ottawa Redblacks via a trade on Jan. 11, retired on April 21. The Riders picked up Price and Ottawa’s sixth-round selection (52nd overall) in Tuesday’s CFL draft for their sixth-round (45th overall) and seventh-round (54th) picks.

Bruce Campbell, an international offensive tackle whom the Riders picked up Feb. 10 through a trade with the Toronto Argonauts, announced his retirement May 3. The Riders traded a fourth-round selection (27th overall) in Tuesday’s draft and a negotiation-list player to the Argonauts for Campbell. Price and Campbell retired without playing a game for the Riders.

Also on May 3, veteran defensive tackle Tearrius George announced his retirement after spending five of his eight CFL seasons with the Riders. George’s retirement announcement was followed by a Regina Police Service media release that indicated he was being charged with a domestic-related assault that allegedly occurred on April 28. George is to appear in Regina Provincial Court on Thursday.

Kelley joined the Riders after spending portions of the previous three seasons in the NFL. In 2015, Kelley attended training camp with the Chicago Bears and dressed for two pre-season games.

The 6-foot-6 Kelley was expected to contribute to the Riders’ passing attack in 2016. He was among the 100-plus players who took part in the Riders’ mini-camp in Vero Beach, Fla. in early April.

“I’m disappointed to have had made this decision, especially only weeks before training camp,” Kelley, 27, said in a prepared statement. “I am concerned about my health due to a non-football-related medical situation that has surfaced. I believe it is in my best interest to discontinue playing at this time.”

Kelley added that he appreciated the opportunity provided by the Riders’ organization. He also wished the Riders success in the 2016 season.

“It’s always difficult to lose a player with the potential that Jeremy Kelley has,” said Chris Jones, the Riders’ general manager and head coach. “He is a young man with lots of opportunities ahead of him and what is most important is his health.”

Kelley’s retirement leaves the Riders with eight international receivers on their active roster. Ryan Lankford and Naaman Roosevelt are the holdovers from the 2015 season. The other receivers are John Chiles, Marcus Davis, Armanti Edwards, Shay Hodge, Kendial Lawrence and Etauj Allen.

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