The Hamilton Tiger-Cats hold the No. 1 selection in the 2018 CFL draft and sources say the team will select receiver Mark Chapman.
The Ticats acquired the pick in a big deal with the Alouettes on Wednesday.
Chapman starred for Central Michigan University, leading the Chippewas with 59 receptions and 875 yards while reaching the end zone five times in 13 games during his senior year. The six-foot, 180-pound pass catcher caught eight balls for 168 yards and three touchdowns against Kansas in the best game of his collegiate career in a 45-27 victory last season. He made 147 receptions for 2,035 yards and 10 touchdowns over four seasons with the Chippewa’s.
Hamilton makes Chapman the team’s first No. 1 pick since Linden Gaydosh in 2013.
“Chapman is the guy that will walk in your locker room, you put him on the field day one in the starting lineup and he does not look out of place at all,” one evaluator said.
“He’s a guy that shows he can step on the field right away and be productive,” another football executive added.
Ticats head coach June Jones really likes Chapman who brings precise route running ability among other traits to the Tabbies offence that will likely start two Canadian receivers. Mike Jones manned the wide side receiver or ‘Z’ spot in 2017 and Shamawd Chambers lined up at slotback after he was brought in from Edmonton. Expect Chapman to make a strong case to start soon, if the playmaking pass catcher doesn’t earn a contract at New York Giants rookie mini-camp from May 10-13.
The son of a Marine, Chapman said at the CFL combine it would be “surreal” to go No. 1 overall, but it’s become real.