New kicker thrills Argos

TERRY KOSHAN, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:41 AM ET

Mike Vanderjagt's return to the Toronto Argonauts might turn out to be one season and done.

Though Vanderjagt remains in the Argos' plans for 2009, it's clear the club is high on kicker/punter Justin Medlock, who signed with Toronto last week after impressing team officials at a free agent camp earlier this month in Florida.

And it's just as clear that if Vanderjagt holds on to his job, the Argos want more bang for their buck.

"If Mike is the guy, so be it," Argos general manager Adam Rita said yesterday. "But we want a better performance out of our kicker. We're not going to hand him the job. We need more consistency.

"We hope that when we come out of this, after training camp, that we have a very competitive kicker (whether it's Vanderjagt or Medlock)."

In his first Canadian Football League season since leaving the Argos for the Indianapolis Colts in 1998, Vanderjagt last year made 39 of 51 field-goal attempts (76.5%, sixth among CFL starters) and was fifth with a punting average of 44.4 yards.

Medlock was a fifth-round pick of the Kansas City Chiefs in 2007 and won the No. 1 role in his first NFL camp. But after making just one of two field goals in Week 1, Medlock was released. He signed with the St. Louis Rams in February 2008 but was a final cut at camp.

"I know I can do the job," Medlock said yesterday from Texas, where he was caddying for girlfriend Hannah Jun as she prepared for the Historic Brownsville Open on the LPGA Futures Tour. "I've competed against a lot of guys at the NFL (level) so I would not be nervous (going head-to-head with Vanderjagt)."

Of the 25-year-old Medlock, Rita said: "He did amazingly well at our camp. We like his age and his ability to put the ball deep."


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