January 15, 2024

Elks send Ceresna to Argos for Gittens Jr.

Walter Tychnowicz/CFL.ca

TORONTO — The Toronto Argonauts and Edmonton Elks have completed a trade, the teams announced on Monday.

Toronto has acquired defensive lineman Jake Ceresna and the rights to a negotiation list player (running back Khalan Laborn) in exchange for receiver Kurleigh Gittens Jr. and Toronto’s seventh round pick in the 2024 CFL Draft.

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Ceresna, 29, played 18 games for the Elks in 2023 and recorded career-highs across the board with 48 defensive tackles, 12 sacks, and one forced fumble in 18 games while being named Edmonton’s choice for Most Outstanding Defensive Player for the second season in a row. The six-foot-five, 295-pound lineman spent the last three seasons in Edmonton after brief stints in 2019 with the New York Giants as well as being drafted by the DC Defenders of the XFL.

The Connecticut native came to the CFL in 2017 with Ottawa, after a short offseason stint with the New York Jets in 2016,  before being traded to Edmonton in 2018. For his career, the State University of New York at Cortland alum has tallied 163 defensive tackles, 37 sacks, and six forced fumbles in 75 career CFL games and was named a CFL All-Star in 2022.

Gittens Jr. joins the Green and Gold after four seasons with the Double Blue. Originally drafted by the Argos in the third round (23rd overall) of the 2019 CFL Draft, the 26-year-old appeared in only 10 games in 2023 due to a hip injury suffered in a game against Montreal on September 9, landing him on the six-game injured list to close out the season.

The Canadian receiver has recorded 167 receptions for 2,132 yards and 10 touchdowns in 54 career CFL games.

“Kurleigh is an explosive player who’s had great success up to this point in his career. A team player, a leader with high football IQ and is familiar with McLeod Bethel-Thompson,” said Elks assistant general manager Geroy Simon.

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