R-united: receiver Jaelon Acklin joining QB Jeremiah Masoli in Ottawa with Redblacks

Quarterback Jeremiah Masoli may have attracted his first major weapon to the nation’s capital, as Hamilton Tiger-Cats pending free agent receiver Jaelon Acklin has indicated in a video posted to Twitter that he will be signing with the Ottawa Redblacks.

Acklin spent two years catching passes from Masoli in Hamilton, helping take the team to two Grey Cup appearances. Neither player can officially sign with Ottawa until free agency opens on February 8.

Acklin started 16 games at receiver for Hamilton in 2019, recording 57 receptions for 701 yards and three touchdowns on 71 targets. The 26-year-old improved in his second CFL season in 2021, recording 50 receptions for 678 yards and four touchdowns over 14 regular season games.

The Ticats signed Acklin in March 2019 after he attended training camp in 2018 with the Ravens. Baltimore released him near the end of August due to a hip injury. After sitting out the season, Hamilton provided the chance to prove what he could do in the pros.

The native of Mountain View, Missouri played 44 games over four seasons (2014-2017) at Western Illinois University, recording 105 receptions for 1,733 yards and 12 touchdowns while adding 21 carries for 255 yards and four rushing touchdowns.

Following a senior season in which Acklin caught 84 passes for 1,369 yards and 10 touchdowns in 12 games, he impressed pro scouts at Northwestern University’s pro day. He ran a 4.47 hand-timed forty-yard dash, recorded a 38-inch vertical, and a ten-foot, three-inch broad jump.

Acklin displayed that raw athletic ability on a number of highlight reel catches during his time in Hamilton and the Redblacks hope he will keep producing with a familiar quarterback tossing him the ball.