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Former Pitt WR Rafael Araujo-Lopes Joins CFL’s Ottawa Redblacks

Former Pitt WR Rafael Araujo-Lopes Joins CFL’s Ottawa Redblacks

Former Pitt wide receiver and kick returner Rafael Araujo-Lopes will continue his football career north of the border.

The 2019 Pitt graduate has been signed to the practice squad of the Ottawa Redblacks of the Canadian Football League, the team announced on Thursday.

Earlier this offseason, Araujo-Lopes participated in rookie minicamp with the Miami Dolphins.

The 5-foot-9, 190-pound receiver broke out in his junior year at Pitt, when he made 43 catches for 531 yards and two touchdowns in 2017. In his senior season, he played in all 14 games and made five starts, grabbing 37 balls for 380 yards and scoring four receiving touchdowns.

He also returned one punt for a touchdown, which is a role the Redblacks are looking for after punt return issues earlier this season. Araujo-Lopes was working with the punt return team in practice this week, a source told Pittsburgh Sports Now, but similarly to the NFL, he will need to be added to the active roster before he can participate in games.

Ottawa is 2-1 and a half-game behind Hamilton for first place in the CFL East Division. They won the East Division in 2018 before falling in the Grey Cup final to Calgary. The Redblacks will host Montreal on Saturday.

Araujo-Lopes joins fellow 2019 Pitt alumni fullback George Aston (Denver Broncos), running back Darrin Hall (Cincinnati Bengals), defensive end Dewayne Hendrix (Miami Dolphins), running back Qadree Ollison (Atlanta Falcons) and linebacker Elijah Zeise (San Diego Chargers) on current professional rosters.

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