Hamilton Tiger-Cats move Lawrence to 6-game injured list ahead of Ottawa showdown


Published July 15, 2022 at 11:50 am

Linebacker Simoni Lawrence, the Hamilton Tiger-Cats’ most dominant defender, will miss multiple games due to an injury.

The absence of the three-time East Division defensive player of the year, who has been placed on the six-game injured list, comes ahead of the Tiger-Cats hosting the the Ottawa Redblacks in a matchup of 0-4 teams on Saturday evening (5 p.m., TSN/RDS/Ticats Audio Network). Lawrence is looked upon to be one of the disruptors for a defensive group which is trying to find its way during a slow start where Hamilton has let sizable leads get away in two of their losses.

Slotback Papi White is also moving to the six-game injured list. A player who is the six-game list has to sit out at least two games before they can be activated and allowed to participate in practice.

Kyle Wilson, who has NFL playing experience, will replace Lawrence at will linebacker. The 6-foot, 229-pound Wilson has been listed as a backup at middle linebacker and has also contributed on special teams, making six tackles in four games in spot duty. The Arkansas State product played in three regular-season games with the Los Angeles Chargers in 2018.

Wilson is the lone new starter this on defence, where the Tiger-Cats have also yet to feature standout defensive halfback Cariel Brooks this season.

Jackson, Ternowski to start

On offence, Tiger-Cats quarterback Dane Evans could have as many as five new starters in the huddle, including a new centre snapping the ball. Alex Fontana has been activated to join the offensive line, which is otherwise intact.

Fourth-year running back Don Jackson is due to make his season debut as the first option in Hamilton’s ground game. Last season, Jackson had 339 rushing-receiving yards and two touchdowns in four games.

Hometown wide receiver Tyler Ternowski, who played his high school football at Sir Allan MacNab, has been moved into the starting lineup. The 24-year-old Ternowski had his progress slowed by an injury in training camp, but made his season debut on June 24 against Winnipeg.

Rookie Anthony Johnson is replacing White at slotback. Fullback Jake Burt is listed as a game-time decision. If Burt cannot suit up, Felix Garand-Gauthier is the next in line.

All-Evans QB matchup

With ex-Tiger-Cat Jeremiah Masoli out long-term with a leg injury, the Redblacks have second-year passer Caleb Evans behind centre.

Evans, who celebrates his 24th birthday tomorrow, has only attempted two passes last season. The Lousiana-Monroe grad started a few games as a rookie in 2021, but his 7.0 yards per pass was the lowest among quarterbacks who tried at least 140 passes. Evans actually provided a better payoff in the ground game last season, rushing for 345 yards with an 8.2 average.

Defensively, Ottawa is allowing 6.8 yards per play, and veteran Redblacks pass defenders Abdul Kanneh and Patrick Levels will both miss this one after being moved to the one-game injured list.

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