Hamilton Tiger-Cats to bring in new middle linebacker in CFL free agency


Published February 8, 2023 at 4:45 pm

One of the most sought-after free agents in the CFL is headed to Hamilton as the Tiger-Cats swap the Mikes — as in middle linebackers.

Multiple reports indicated that 28-year-old Jameer Thurman will sign with Hamilton after the free-agency period opens at 12 p.m. on Tuesday (Feb. 14). Thurman was the second-leading tackler and co-interceptions leader last season with the Calgary Stampeders, and was also CFL defensive player of the month for September.

The signing was first reported by 3DownNation, which ranked Thurman as the No. 7 pending free agent in the league.

The six-foot, 227-pound Chicago native has played four seasons in the CFL spread across the last six seasons. Thurman was part of the 2018 Calgary team that won the Grey Cup with present-day Tiger-Cats quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell behind centre. His career has also included a National Football League stint in with his hometown Chicago Bears (2019) and time with the D.C. Destroyers in the XFL (2020).

All three of the Tiger-Cats first-choice linebackers from last season went into the winter unsigned, but one appears to have found his next football home. Reports on Tuesday indicated that middle linebacker Jovan Santos-Knox will reportedly move across Ontario to join the Ottawa Redblacks.

Receiver Tim White, defensive backs Ciante Evans and Jumal Rolle, outside linebacker Simoni Lawrence, and strong-side linebacker Kam Kelly are other players who could hit the open market in six days’ time. The CFL’s nine teams can negotiate with players this week, but signings will not be formalized until Feb. 14.

— with files from The Canadian Press

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