Riders transfer receiver Jordan Williams-Lambert to deferred list, NFL deal imminent

The Saskatchewan Roughriders have put receiver Jordan Williams-Lambert on the “deferred list” meaning an NFL agreement is close.

That’s where CFL teams are putting players with option years in their contracts prior to signing NFL deals. When the NFL window was phased out in 2012, clubs had little use for the deferred list but it’s returned to prominence after the league reinstated the NFL window last summer.

The Riders retain Williams-Lambert’s CFL rights for the 2019 season should he return north of the border.

After filing a grievance, Williams-Lambert was granted the opportunity to work out and potentially sign with NFL teams, creating his own window.

Williams-Lambert worked out for the Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions, New York Giants and New England Patriots in December.

NFL interest came for Williams-Lambert after a first CFL season in which he caught 62 passes for 764 yards and four touchdowns for the Saskatchewan Roughriders. The impressive campaign led to Williams-Lambert being named the West Division Most Oustanding Rookie.

The 24-year-old went unselected in the 2016 NFL Draft out of Ball State University – recording 200 receptions for 2,723 yards and 24 touchdowns in 44 NCAA games with the Cardinals – but inked an undrafted free agent contract with the New Orleans Saints catching three passes for 58 yards in the pre-season and earned a spot on the practice roster for the 2016 season. The Saints waived Williams-Lambert during training camp in 2017 when an injury settlement was reached.

Williams-Lambert is a big-bodied – six-foot-three, 228 pounds – pass catcher who runs well (4.64 40-yard dash) for his size.

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