B.C. Lions extend contract of QB Vernon Adams Jr. through 2024

Photo: Paul Yates/B.C. Lions

The B.C. Lions have signed quarterback Vernon Adams Jr. to an extension tying him to the franchise through 2024, the club announced on Wednesday. He was previously set to become a free agent following the 2023 season.

“I am excited and honoured to be behind centre for this great franchise and for the chance to be locked in for two years along with some of the other great core pieces,” said Adams Jr. in a statement.

“It has been a productive off-season with [offensive coordinator] Jordan Maksymic and many of our great offensive players. We can’t wait to hit the ground running starting on day one of training camp in Kamloops.”

The 30-year-old was acquired via trade from the Montreal Alouettes on Aug. 31, 2022 after Nathan Rourke suffered what was believed to be a season-ending injury to his foot. He threw for 1,504 yards, six touchdowns, and one interception with the Lions and went 4-2 as a starter, helping the team finish second in the West Division.

The native of Pasadena, Calif. has thrown for 8,492 yards, 49 touchdowns, and 27 interceptions over 75 career CFL games as a member of the Alouettes, Saskatchewan Roughriders, and Lions. The dual-threat passer has also recorded 217 carries for 1,107 yards and 20 touchdowns.

B.C. recently gave Adams Jr. a vote of confidence after Rourke departed the club to sign with the Jacksonville Jaguars of the NFL. Before signing his new contract, the veteran passer was set to earn just over $400,000 in 2023 if he reached all of his contractual incentives. It is unclear whether or not this has changed under the terms of his new deal.

The Lions have only two other quarterbacks under contract for 2023 in Vad Lee and Breylin Smith, who share a combined three games of CFL experience. Antonio Pipkin and Michael O’Connor, who spent this past year with the club, are both set to become free agents on Tuesday, Feb. 14.