Vikings sign XFL linebacker DeMarquis Gates

The newest Viking starred in stints with the XFL and AAF.
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DeMarquis Gates

The Minnesota Vikings came to terms with linebacker DeMarquis Gates on Wednesday, parlaying a successful stint with the Houston Roughnecks into an opportunity for a roster spot.

The 24-year-old was one of the stars in the second iteration of the XFL, playing five games for the Roughnecks and collecting 32 tackles, three pass deflections, two sacks, and an interception. 

Gates also graded well in Pro Football Focus' advanced stats, finishes as the seventh-best linebacker in the eight-team league.

The Ole Miss product has been a tackling machine throughout his playing career, leading the Rebels in tackles from 2015-17. He also made his mark in the spring of 2018, leading the now-defunct Alliance of American Football (AAF) in tackles through eight games.

The strong performance with the Memphis Express landed Gates a contract with Washington prior to last season, but he didn't make the team out of training camp.

With the XFL season over due to the coronavirus pandemic, players were allowed to sign with teams beginning on Monday. As the Vikings have lost a slew of players, they'll hope that Gates can be a depth piece that can contribute on special teams in 2020.

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