Quarterback Matt Nichols Officially Retires from CFL

CFL quarterback Matt Nichols has officially retired from football after a successful career that began in 2010. Nichols played for the Edmonton Eskimos (Elks), Winnipeg Blue Bombers, Toronto Argonauts, and Ottawa Redblacks in a star-studded career.


Even with the Elks currently suffering a quarterback crisis, Nichols won’t be putting the pads back on to help them through the issues. Nichols recently confirmed his retirement while appearing on 630 CHED during the Elks’ broadcast.


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“I’m retired, I’m done playing football. I actually called to retire and tried to make it official and then kind of nothing took place after that,” Nichols stated. “Enough time passed where I was like, alright, I’m just not gonna make an announcement.


“I mean, I think everyone can tell that I’m done playing football and I think doing some big announcement would be more for me than it would be for anyone else. Everyone else can kind of see that that’s the case.”


Nichols was set passing records as college quarterback for Eastern Washington University. He was a four-year starter for the Eagles. In 47 games for EWU, he tallied 96 touchdowns while throwing for 12,616 yards. Despite the excellent stats at EWU, Nichols went undrafted by NFL teams after finishing four years of collegiate football.


The Dallas Cowboys invited Nichols to training camp, but the stint with the NFL team was brief. Nichols signed with the Elks in 2010. Over the next six seasons, Nichols played mostly as a back-up quarterback. Halfway through the 2015 season, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers acquired Nichols via trade with Edmonton.


It was with Winnipeg that Nichols turned into one of the best quarterbacks in the CFL. In 2019, Nichols helped the Blue Bombers win the Grey Cup, although his season was ended in Week 10 following a shoulder injury. Prior to the injury, Nichols had thrown for 15 touchdowns.


In 2021, Nichols joined the Ottawa Redblacks by appeared in just six games. Another shoulder injury ended Nichols’ season after throwing for just 544 yards. The injury was the catalyst to Nichols deciding to hang up his shoulder pads. His arrival at Ottawa came after contract negotiations with the Toronto Argonauts reached an impasse. Nichol’s two-year contract with the Redblacks was worth a reported $317,000 in hard money.


The former Grey Cup winner played 120 games in the CFL, throwing for 108 touchdowns. He completed 1,645 passes on 2,469 attempts for a total of 18,907 yards. While the passing stats were significant and many fans will remember Nichols for his play on the field, the quarterback’s career was blighted by injuries. His health issues included a broken leg and serious ACL injury. Both of which Nichols battled back from.

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