Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Soul re-sign DB Tanner Varner

PHILADELPHIA – The Soul have re-signed defensive back Tanner Varner for the 2012 season. 

Varner becomes the seventh player – joining Nyere Aumaitre, Larry Brackins, Chris Frank, Drew Gardner, Donovan Morgan and Kent Richardson – as players returning from the 2011 season.

“Tanner is an impact player and we are glad to have him back in Philadelphia,” said Soul general manager Tom Goodhines.  “He is a key part in our plans for the secondary and a piece we know that we can build around.  This will be the first of a few key defensive signings that we will have in the near future as we continue to build toward a championship.”

Varner is looking to build off of the 2011 season with the Soul, registering No. 5 on the team in tackles (45), and No. 2 on the team in interceptions (5).  He also led the defense in touchdowns (5), to go along with four pass breakups and one kickoff returned for a touchdown.

“Tanner represents the physical presence we are looking for on the defensive side of the ball,” said Soul head coach Doug Plank.  “He has great field awareness and tremendous ball skills to compliment his physical style of play.  Defense wins championships and Tanner will be a big part of that this season.”

While playing in the af2 in 2009, Varner finished the season leading the league in tackles (119.5), while adding two tackles for loss, eight interceptions, and two forced fumbles.  In 2008, he finished the season leading the Barnstormers in tackles (91.0), also adding seven interceptions and two forced fumbles.

In 2007, he was an All-League defensive back with the af2’s Arkansas Twisters and finished third on the team in tackles (83.5) while leading the team in interceptions (9) and two forced fumbles.  At Northern Iowa, Varner was named First Team All-American and All-Gateway Conference in 2005 and named Defensive MVP in 1AA National Championship game.  He finished the season with three interceptions, 85.5 tackles and 13.5 tackles for loss.

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