Lions extend Rhymes, Norman, Guzylak-Messam

VANCOUVER — The BC Lions have extended American wide receiver Dominique Rhymes, American offensive lineman Phil Norman and National linebacker Isaiah Guzylak-Messam. All three players were eligible to become free agents on Feb. 8.

Despite being limited to eight games due to an ankle injury, Rhymes emerged as one of the more impactful newcomers on offence, hauling in 28 receptions for 411 yards and a touchdown.

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In addition, the Miami, Fla. native’s 14.7 yards per catch was second behind Lucky Whitehead amongst Lions receivers in 2021. His most productive season to date came in 2019, his third with the Ottawa REDBLACKS, where he caught 65 passes for 1,056 yards and five majors.

After being let go as part of the squad’s training camp cutdowns, the versatile Norman returned to the Lions’ practice squad in early September and would start at left tackle in a 43-10 win over Edmonton to wrap up the regular season.

The former standout at Bethune-Cookman will enter his fourth season with the Lions in 2022, having suited up in 13 games as the club’s starting centre in 2019.

Guzylak-Messam was drafted by the Lions in the fourth round (34th overall) in 2018 out of Wilfrid Laurier. He dressed in 12 games in 2021 as a backup linebacker while also playing a role on special teams.

He has appeared in 40 contests over the past three seasons, recording a total of 37 defensive tackles, one sack plus 24 more tackles on special teams.

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