NFL cuts headed north?

PERRY LEFKO -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 7:53 AM ET

Two high-profile Canadian players named Jesse could be coming to the Canadian Football League, one as early as next week.

Running back Jesse Lumsden and quarterback Jesse Palmer are both eyeing the CFL.

Lumsden has ended his dream of pursuing the NFL after he was cut last month by the Seattle Seahawks, who signed him as a free agent this year out of McMaster University. The Seahawks cut him after the first pre-season game, in which he did not play. He had knee and hip injuries in training camp.

Sources indicate contract negotiations are underway between Lumsden's representative and the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, who selected him sixth overall in this year's draft. It's expected a deal will be announced as early as Monday and he will be in the Tiger-Cats lineup against Calgary on Sept. 17 at Ivor Wynne Stadium, but will debut as a return specialist.

Meanwhile, Palmer, who was cut this month by the New York Giants, is a free agent considering his future. The Toronto-born, Nepean-raised Palmer is held in high regard by the Ottawa Renegades, who would like to acquire his rights from the Montreal Alouettes. They drafted him in the second round in 2001 out of the University of Florida. It's believed the Renegades will try to sign Palmer, who played sparingly for the Giants but received fame starring on the reality show The Bachelor in 2004, and then make a deal with the Als.

Sources claim Renegades owners Bernie and Lonie Glieberman believe Palmer can help boost the team's ticket sales and are willing to make him the highest-paid player in the CFL with a contract in excess of $460,000 a year. But the deal will make sense only if he plays because he'll have little impact as a backup.


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