Relationship between Riders and Shawn Lemon has soured

Multiple CFL sources say the relationship between defensive end Shawn Lemon and the Saskatchewan has gone sour and the club is actively trying to trade the 27-year-old.

Lemon is listed third on the depth chart for Thursday’s season-opener against Toronto and some say he could be scratched from the game day roster. Sources say there is friction between Lemon and the coaching staff led by new vice president of football operations and head coach Chris Jones.

“Trouble in paradise. Probably not a Chris Jones guy,” said one CFL personnel man. “They dangled him more than a week ago.”

Lemon was originally signed by the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in 2011, moved on to Saskatchewan that same year, then spent time in the Arena and Indoor Football Leagues. He joined the Eskimos in 2012, then broke out with the Calgary Stampeders in 2014, recording 13 sacks and eight forced fumbles (a CFL record) while winning a Grey Cup championship.

After pursuing NFL opportunities, Lemon signed with the Ottawa Redblacks last September, adding five sacks during the team’s run to the Grey Cup. He left the nation’s capital to chase the NFL a second time but ultimately signed with the Roughriders in January, a move that led to a Twitter spat between Lemon and Ottawa general manager Marcel Desjardins.

Lemon maintained a high profile over the winter and was part of the Saskatchewan contingent sent to Toronto for a marketing and media blitz in April. But things have not gone according to plan on the field in Regina.

“Lemon wants out to be a starter elsewhere,” said another source.

Saskatchewan signed Lemon to a contract worth a reported $170,000 for 2016 with a whopping $85,000 signing bonus – which will count against the Riders’ cap even if they are able to move him. Despite the reduced financial burden, sources say the market for Lemon isn’t robust.

“Not. Much.” said a CFL source when asked about what Lemon might bring in a trade. “It’s going to be hard to do.”

Justin Dunk

Justin Dunk

Justin Dunk was a five-year starter at quarterback for the University of Guelph. He covers the league for Sportsnet and 3DownNation.
Justin Dunk
Justin Dunk
About Justin Dunk (931 Articles)
Justin Dunk was a five-year starter at quarterback for the University of Guelph. He covers the league for Sportsnet and 3DownNation.

20 Comments on Relationship between Riders and Shawn Lemon has soured

  1. Guy has been on about 5 different CFL teams already; seems to think he is better than what all of the other teams have seen. Being released and traded that many times … Twitter feuds … He’s a dime a dozen player in Canada. Younger, cheaper, faster Americans out there. Next man up. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out Lemon.

  2. Heather Dufault // June 29, 2016 at 9:51 pm //

    Yeah, right–another one of these “multiple CFL sources” gossip-stories; much of the time they amount to nothing…

  3. I call BS on this one

  4. S McBride (TFMCB ) // June 29, 2016 at 10:34 pm //

    If he’s not a “Chris Jones guy” then why did Jones sign him? That being said, Lemon does seem to be more about himself given that he has now bounced around to most of the western teams plus Ottawa and none of them seem to have gone out of their way to re-sign him. Jones may be stuck with this mistake if there are no takers as seems to be the case at the moment.

  5. Who is this Justin Dunk? Some no name

  6. Clarkenstein // June 29, 2016 at 10:40 pm //

    Mr. Dunk I would like to hear from you why you were revealing the names of players from the draft before the team did. Not classy at all.

    • Michael R Dennis // June 30, 2016 at 12:03 am //

      Because it was a live event, some people were only following it on Twitter. TSN botched the handoff from live tv to streaming and generally dragged everything out. Justin doesn’t work for TSN and doesn’t have a responsibility to match their pacing if the information is already out.
      Also, for you to find out you’d have to be watching the Twitter updates at the same time as the TV feed so would you get mad at hearing a radio broadcast update something faster than the TV production if you were watching them both? No, because you’re an adult and watched them both at the same time on your own accord.
      He did his job. He shouldn’t have to apologize for the inconvenience of not syncing his news to his competitors.

      • Robin (from THE city) // July 1, 2016 at 9:42 am //

        TSN totally botched the process and fans had to wait a ridiculous amount of time to find out what their team did, and sometimes didn’t get the information AT ALL. Justin was speeding this up and, in some cases, filled in the blanks.

        As someone who used to try to watch this broadcast, I was frustrated by TSN’s poor effort and eventually gave up on it.

        Good for Justin to think of us, because The Toronto Sports Network sure didn’t.

  7. Mr. Dunk printed leaked information. I’d say he was just doing his job and doing it well.

  8. Didnt want to sign in Hamilton because he wouldnt be the face of the defence, now hes not happy in SSK. Tough for him

  9. Justin Dunk is a total classy dude and one of the best reporters in the CFL. Those haters commenting here need to grow up…. If you don’t like a reporter reporting facts than unplug your internet and buy a newspaper so you can be a day behind on everything. Common this is the 21st century!!

    As for Lemon…. Karma dude … That’s all I gotta say

  10. Robin (from THE city) // June 30, 2016 at 9:27 am //

    With all his self imposed “bouncing”, Lemon has created a self created problem.

    Perhaps, he needs to reign his self inflated worth and ego.

    It’s not working for him.

    Justin, I enjoy your work very much.

  11. Frederic // June 30, 2016 at 1:16 pm //

    If all the stuff Im hearing about Lemon is true. He reminds me of another very good player that never could keep it in check… “Jason Armstead” Bounced from one team to another simply due to a poor attitude.

  12. Robin (from THE city) // June 30, 2016 at 2:47 pm //

    IF this guy is as good as HE thinks he is, he would have stuck on one his trips to the NFL.

    The fact that he is back, speaks volumes for how good he REALLY is.

    Sadly, Lemon is finding out just how worn out his welcome has become.

  13. Francine // June 30, 2016 at 9:13 pm //

    Maybe Mr Lemon never made the NFL because of his attitude!

    • Robin (from THE city) // July 1, 2016 at 9:50 am //

      Perhaps, Francine, but the league to the south is sometimes willing to overlook SOME problems if they see enough talent. For example, Greg Hardy. Joseph Randle (who was only released because his on field showing was not good enough).

      And that’s only one team.

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  15. trade him to montreal for cato or alan micheal cash

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