Semiahmoo Peninsula-raised kicker Sean Whyte is returning to the Canadian Football League for another season.
On Thursday, the currently unnamed Edmonton Football Team – the franchise dropped its ‘Eskimos’ moniker last summer – announced via a new release and social media post that five players, including Whyte, had signed contact extensions with the club.
Whyte announced the contract himself on social media with a simple two-word post – “I’m back!!!” – Thursday afternoon.
Whyte, 35, is entering his sixth season with Edmonton – he won a Grey Cup with the franchise in 2015 – and is among the most accurate placekickers in CFL history. He has never had a field-goal success rate of less than 87 per cent in a given season, and in 11 seasons he has accumulated 1,415 points, which is good for 17th on the all-time CFL scoring list.
Whyte, a Semiahmoo Secondary graduate who played junior football with the Surrey Rams, has also played with the Montreal Alouettes and B.C. Lions.
The CFL cancelled its 2020-‘21 season, and Whyte has spent the last several months back in the South Surrey/White Rock area, training on his old high-school rugby field.
Edmonton drafted a kicker in this year’s amateur draft – something that didn’t go unnoticed by Whyte, who noted it during an interview with Peace Arch News last May, while adding that he was unsure what the Edmonton decision-makers thought with regard to his future with the club.
“(The team) said don’t worry about it – it’s just something for the future, and right now I’m their kicker. But I’m too competitive to be OK with it,” he said.
“I know I’m only getting stronger and better, and I think I’ve proven that, but it’s still a scary feeling… I was training my butt off so I could have a good year and sign another good contract, (but) maybe the team thinks, ‘Oh, he’s 34, that’s when the body starts to break down’ – that kind of thing. I know that isn’t happening, but I don’t know how they think.”