Not yet a Tiger-Cat

PERRY LEFKO -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:34 AM ET

For the time being, the Hamilton Tiger-Cats will have play without the services of Jesse Lumsden.

The burly running back, whose Canadian Football League rights are owned by the Tiger-Cats after they drafted him in the first round this year out of McMaster University, will explore the National Football League market before committing to Hamilton.

The Tiger-Cats made exploratory calls to the player's crafty representative, Dan Lawson, after Lumsden's release from the Seattle Seahawks on Tuesday. The Ticats were hoping they could sign Lumsden and have him in the lineup for tomorrow night's game at Ivor Wynne Stadium against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. The roster had to be declared to the league by 4 p.m. yesterday.

The Ticats are last in the league with an 0-8 record and could use any help, and Lumsden would have provided an emotional spark to their kick-return coverage.

He had been trying to make it as a kickoff returner with the Seahawks, who signed him as a free agent this year after he tested solidly in a private workout, but a knee and hip injury limited his effectiveness in training camp.

He dressed for the Seahawks' pre-season game against Dallas on Monday night but did play.

Because Lumsden didn't play in the pre-season, the chances are minimal he will receive any NFLinterest.

It's expected a deal will be done with the Tiger-Cats to have him in the lineup for the Labour Day game against the Argonauts at Ivor Wynne Stadium.

SHOULD KNOW SOON

"I would think so by then," said Ron Lancaster, Hamilton's director of football operations. "You'll know in the next two or three days if you'll get a chance (with another NFLteam)."


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