February 13, 2024

TRANSACTION | Elks ink star returner Javon Leake

Javon Leake (32) returns the ball during second half of CFL action against the Ottawa Redblacks, in Toronto, Oct. 14, 2023. - Photo Courtesy: CP Images

EDMONTON – The Sandman is bringing his talents to the West, as the Edmonton Elks announced the signing of American returner Javon Leake at the start of CFL Free Agency.

Leake was named the Most Outstanding Special Teams Player in 2023, earning his first CFL All-Star selection. The Maryland product suited up in 17 games for the Toronto Argonauts, where he led the league with 1,216 punt return yards — the third highest total in CFL history — and added a league leading four punt return touchdowns. Leake began his CFL career with the Argos in 2022, appearing in eight regular season games and helping the Double Blue win the 109th Grey Cup in a 24 -23 win over the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

In 25 career CFL games the Greensboro, N.C., native has 1,402 punt return yards, 1,297 kickoff return yards and has rushed for 52 yards on 15 carries, while adding five receptions for 74 yards.

“Javon is an elite talent as a returner and running back, he’s been on my radar and I’ve tracked him since 2020 when he left the University of Maryland, “said Elks assistant general manager Geroy Simon.

“He was our number one target heading into free agency and we couldn’t be more excited to have him join the Double E.”

Prior to joining the CFL, Leake spent time with the Detroit Lions in 2021 as well as the Washington Commanders and New York Giants in 2020.

Collegiately, the 25-year-old played three seasons at the University of Maryland (2017-19), recording 1,487 return yards and rushing for 1,144 yards with 17 touchdowns in 33 career games for the Terrapins. In 2019 he was a First Team All-Big Ten selection and was named Big Ten return specialist of the year.

2024 marks the 75th season of pro football in Edmonton, as the Elks open a new CFL campaign on Saturday, June 8 against the Saskatchewan Roughriders at Commonwealth Stadium. Season tickets are available now, with all youth season tickets $75 (17 and under) and adult tickets starting at $175.




The Edmonton Elks are proud members of the Canadian Football League, playing their home games at Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton, Alberta.

The club, officially renamed the Elks in June of 2021, has a tradition of excellence having won 14 Grey Cup championships (1954-56, 1975, 1978-82, 1987, 1993, 2003, 2005, 2015). Since its founding, the club has been community-owned and remains focused on providing outstanding football memories for Edmonton and all of Northern Alberta.

Elks Football…Our Team. Our City.