Geroy Simon

Last updated

Geroy Simon
No. 81
Geroy Simon 2011.jpg
Born: (1975-09-11) 11 September 1975 (age 45)
Johnstown, Pennsylvania
Career information
CFL status American
Position(s) SB
Height6 ft 2 in (188 cm)
Weight198 lb (90 kg)
College Maryland
Career history
As player
1997 Pittsburgh Steelers*
19992000 Winnipeg Blue Bombers
20012012 BC Lions
2013 Saskatchewan Roughriders
*Off-season and/or practice roster member only
Career highlights and awards
CFL All-Star 2003, 2004, 20062008, 2011
CFL West All-Star 2003, 2004, 20062009, 2011
Awards
RecordsMost career receiving yards (16,352)
Career stats

Geroy Simon (born 11 September 1975) is a retired professional Canadian football slotback who played 15 seasons in the Canadian Football League, twelve of them with the BC Lions. Simon won the CFL's Most Outstanding Player Award in 2006 while also winning three Grey Cup championships; with the BC Lions in 2006 and 2011 and with Saskatchewan in 2013. As of the 2013 CFL season, Simon is the all-time career leader in CFL receiving yards with 16,352 yards, second in pass receptions with 1,029 and third in touchdown receptions with 103.

Contents

Simon was inducted into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame in 2017. [1]

College career

Simon finished second on the University of Maryland's all-time charts for receptions (185) and receiving yards (2,059), and caught 10 career touchdown passes. As a senior, he caught 35 passes for 534 yards and 3 touchdowns. He had his best season as a sophomore, setting an ACC record with 77 catches for 891 yards and 5 touchdowns. That season, he also returned a kickoff 94 yards for a touchdown.

Professional career

Pittsburgh Steelers

1997: Spent part of the 1997 season on the NFL's Pittsburgh Steelers practice squad. [2]

Winnipeg Blue Bombers

19992000: Saw some time at slotback and wide receiver for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, playing in 10 games in 1999 and all 18 regular season games in 2000. Simon caught 51 passes for 725 yards and 7 TDs in 2000, all career numbers at the time.

BC Lions

2001: Joined the BC Lions as a free agent and served as a backup at the slotback position, seeing time in 6 games.

2002: Led the Lions with 50 receptions in his first full season in the starting lineup, finishing with 754 yards. He also threw for a 71-yard touchdown toss in his only attempt of the season. He established career highs in kick returns with 51 punt returns for 464 yards, 19 kickoff returns for 385 yards and six missed field goal returns for 128 yards.

2003: Recorded his first 1,000-yard receiving season with 1687 yards and was named both a Western and a CFL All-Star for the first time in his career. Named Offensive Player of the Week for Week #16. He also scored his first two-point conversion on a five-yard reception. For the second consecutive season, he threw a touchdown pass, this time for 52 yards. He also had a career-high seven carries for 135 yards and one rushing touchdown.

2004: Became the third Lions player to record 100 receptions in a season with 103 catches. He broke Darren Flutie's BC Lions team record for single season receiving with 1,750 yards. Caught 3 passes for 31 yards in the 2004 Grey Cup. Received his second straight Western and CFL All-Star berth and was named Offensive Player of the Week in Week #9.

2005: Led the Lions in receiving (both yards and receptions) for the third straight season. Ranked 4th in the CFL in receiving yards with 1,322 and 5th in receptions with 89. Set an all-time Lions playoff record with a 90-yard reception for a touchdown against Edmonton in the 2005 West Final.

2006: Simon led the CFL in receiving yards and receptions, with 1,856 yards on 105 receptions and 15 touchdowns, all of which are career highs. Consequently, he broke his own team receiving yards record that he set in 2004. He also tied the CFL record for most 100-yard receiving games in a season with 11. Evidenced by his dominant play, Simon was named the CFL Offensive Player of the Month for both September and October. For his efforts on the season, Simon was named the Most Outstanding Player of the CFL for the 2006 season. He capped off the season by contributing four catches for 41 yards in the BC Lions' 2006 Grey Cup win.

2007: Simon had a difficult start to the season, accumulating only 449 yards and one touchdown through ten games. However, it turned out that he had saved his best for last and caught 38 passes for 859 yards and six touchdowns in the final eight games, incidentally, all wins for the Lions. He set a personal best 18.2-yard average per catch and claimed his second straight receiving title with a 211-yard performance in the final game of the season.

2008: On 25 July 2008, in a home game against the Montreal Alouettes, Simon surpassed Jim "Dirty 30" Young for the number one spot as the Lions all-time receiving yards receiver. He finished the season with 10,262 career receiving yards. He also became the Lions all-time receiving touchdown leader surpassing Young's 65 with his 66th touchdown on 27 September 2008 versus the Hamilton Tiger-Cats. He finished the season with eight 100-yard receiving games and finished second in receiving despite missing two games with injury.

2009: With the release of Jason Clermont before the 2009 CFL season, Simon and Paris Jackson were the only remaining 1,000-yard receivers on the 2009 BC Lions team and Simon routinely faced double and triple coverage by opponents reducing his receptions. [3] Nonetheless, Simon had 79 receptions for 1,239 yards, securing his seventh straight 1,000-yard receiving yards season. This was also his seventh consecutive season in which he led the Lions in receiving yards. [4]

2010: Simon recorded his eighth straight 1,000-yard receiving yard season in 2010, amassing 1,190 yards on 78 catches with six touchdowns.

2011: On 10 September, Simon passed Willie Fleming as the Lions' all-time touchdown leader after he scored his 88th touchdown as a Lion in the last game to be played at Empire Field. He came into the season needing 1417 receiving yards to pass Milt Stegall as the CFL's all-time leader in receiving yardage. While finishing just short, he nonetheless had an all-star season, recording 84 catches for 1350 yards and eight touchdowns. Simon played in the 99th Grey Cup, catching four passes for 79 yards en route to a 34-23 Lions' victory and the second Grey Cup championship of his career.

2012: On 29 June, while playing against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and with the former record holder Milt Stegall in attendance, Simon became the all-time CFL career reception yards leader.

Saskatchewan Roughriders

2013: On 24 January, Simon was traded to the Saskatchewan Roughriders in exchange for receiver Justin Harper and Saskatchewan's third round pick in the 2014 CFL Draft. [5] On the same day, the Saskatchewan Roughriders signed Simon to a contract for one year plus an option worth $170,000 per year plus bonuses. [6] Geroy Simon missed the first 3 weeks of the 2013 CFL season with a lower body injury. [7] On 17 August 2013 (Week 8) Simon became the 3rd player in CFL history to have 1,000 career receptions: The other players are Ben Cahoon and Terry Vaughn [8] In Week 9 (1 week later) Simon became the first CFL player to have 16,000 receiving yards. [9] In Week 14, against the Montreal Alouettes, Simon became the CFL's all time receptions leader. He surpassed Ben Cahoon's record of 1,017 career receptions. Simon would finish the season on a winning note catching two touchdown passes in the biggest game of the year en route to the Roughriders winning their fourth Grey Cup championship.

On May 31, 2014, Simon announced his retirement from professional football. [10] [11]

Statistics

Receiving Regular season Playoffs
YearTeamGamesNo.YardsAvgLongTDGamesNo.YardsAvgLongTD
1999 WPG 10343069.0250Team did not qualify
2000 WPG 175172514.2807245413.5311
2001 BC 61418213.0331155611.2320
2002 BC 175075415.1422158817.6310
2003 BC 1894168717.91031313113.750
2004 BC 18103175017.0891428739.1180
2005 BC 1889132214.983101311237.3901
2006 BC 18105185617.7921528759.4130
2007 BC 1872130818.2966155010.0181
2008 BC 1682141817.379102917919.9461
2009 BC 1879123915.76262914115.7480
2010 BC 1878119015.3986144511.3140
2011 BC 1884135016.163821018518.5531
2012 BC 135470012.956216569.3560
2013 SSK 154056514.14533610317.2422
WPG totals27851,03112.1807245413.5311
BC totals19690414,75616.31039317751,07114.3904
SSK totals154056514.14533610317.2422
CFL totals2371,02916,35215.910310322851,22814.4907

Personal life

Before ultimately choosing football as a career, Simon enjoyed great success as a basketball player at a young age. He also took up baseball and track, but became attracted to football after watching Walter Payton. Envisioning a career in professional football, he accepted a scholarship offer from the University of Maryland. During his spare time, Simon has said that he listens to B.B. King, watches SportsCentre, and plays pool. Simon also coaches his son's minor football team. Simon lives in Langley, British Columbia, during the CFL season with his two children Jaden and Jordan.

Simon was together with his wife, Tracy Simon, for 17 years before her tragic death in a car accident in 2017. [12] [13]

His eldest son Gervon, who was born when Geroy was a freshman at Maryland, was formerly the starting quarterback at Greater Johnstown High School - Geroy's alma mater - who finished as the all-time passing yards leader. [14] [15]

Post-retirement career

After Simon ended his playing career in 2013, he remained with the Saskatchewan Roughriders in a front office role. Simon returned to the BC Lions in 2015 and is currently the Lions' Director for Global Scouting and a US Regional Scout. [16]

Awards and legacy

In 2012, in honour of the 100th Grey Cup, Canada Post used his image on a series of commemorative postage stamps. The image was also used on presentation posters and other materials to promote the Grey Cup game and other celebrations associated with the centennial.

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References

  1. http://www.cfhof.ca/2017/03/23/geroy-simon-natural-hall-of-famer/
  2. "Steeler Receiving Corps Is Battered and Bruised". The New York Times. 15 October 1997. Retrieved 5 February 2014.
  3. Morris, Jim (4 August 2009). "B.C.'s Simon says attention is affecting play". SLAM! Sports. The Canadian Press. Retrieved 5 August 2009.[ dead link ]
  4. "Lions All-time Leaders" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 January 2010. Retrieved 5 February 2014.
  5. "Superman flies to Saskatchewan". Archived from the original on 9 October 2015. Retrieved 28 August 2017.
  6. Lions trade Simon to Saskatchewan for Harper, third-round pick
  7. Misses 3 straight game with lower back injury
  8. "Simon gets 1,000 career receptions, August 2013". Archived from the original on 2 December 2013. Retrieved 26 August 2013.
  9. First CFL receiver to have 16,000 yards, August 2013
  10. Anderson, Eric (1 June 2014). "Rider training camp opens with Geroy Simon's retirement". CBC.ca. Canadian Broadcasting Corporation . Retrieved 4 June 2014.
  11. "CFL's All- Time Receptions and Receiving Yards Leader, Geroy Simon Announces Retirement". Riderville.com. Saskatchewan Roughrider Football Club Inc. 4 June 2014. Archived from the original on 6 June 2014. Retrieved 4 June 2014.
  12. https://bc.ctvnews.ca/tracy-lasorsa-simon-wife-of-b-c-lions-great-geroy-simon-dies-1.3391931
  13. https://theprovince.com/sports/football/ed-willes-hall-of-famer-simon-copes-being-a-superman-on-hurting-home-front
  14. "Ups and downs of fatherhood". The Province (Vancouver). 12 November 2010. Archived from the original on 28 December 2013. Retrieved 2 October 2011.
  15. "Gervon Simon, #10". Archived from the original on 15 January 2015. Retrieved 10 January 2015.
  16. https://www.bclions.com/staff-geroy-simon/