Former Riders quarterback Paxton Lynch selected by Michigan Panthers in USFL Draft

Photo courtesy: Saskatchewan Roughriders

Former Saskatchewan Roughriders quarterback Paxton Lynch was selected by the Michigan Panthers in the 12th round of the USFL Draft.

Lynch was released by the Riders one day prior to the startup league’s talent grab.

The six-foot-seven, 244-pound passer spent the entire 2021 regular season on Saskatchewan’s active roster or one-game injured list, allowing him to collect his full salary while adjusting to the three-down game. He was placed on the team’s suspended list ahead of the playoffs and remained there throughout opening months of the off-season.

Lynch’s compensation for the 2021 season included $65,000 in base salary, $3,600 in housing, and a $200 per-game active roster bonus. He also would have earned an extra $500 for every game in which he played 51 percent or more of the Riders offensive snaps.

The 28-year-old did not dress for a game as Cody Fajardo, Isaac Harker, and Mason Fine were the three quarterbacks used by Saskatchewan on game-day rosters during the regular season. Lynch’s contract originally ran through the end of the 2022 season.

After being selected No. 26 overall by the Denver Broncos in the 2016 NFL Draft, Lynch earned more than $8.8 million in the NFL. He suited up in five games during two seasons in Denver, posting a 1-3 win-loss record while completing 61.7 percent of his passes for 792 yards, four touchdowns, and four interceptions.

Lynch hasn’t played in an NFL game since the 2017 season. He was a member of the Seattle Seahawks and Pittsburgh Steelers in recent years but was among final training camp cuts in 2019 and 2020, respectively.

Michigan selected fellow former CFL quarterback Shea Patterson with the first overall pick in the USFL Draft.