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Jaguars Sign FB Tim Lester

August 15, 1999

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) _ The Jacksonville Jaguars plucked another free agent out of Pittsburgh on Saturday, signing fullback Tim Lester to a one-year deal.

Lester gives the Jaguars depth at a position where they had only one experienced veteran, third-year player Daimon Shelton.

Lester, a seven-year veteran, spent the last four seasons with Pittsburgh and was the lead blocker for Jerome Bettis. Lester joins former Steeler Carnell Lake, one of the first free agents the Jaguars signed in the offseason.

Bettis said he would be upset if the Steelers let Lester become a free agent, but Pittsburgh did just that, adding yet another proven veteran to a long list of free agents that got away.

In seven seasons split between the Steelers and the Rams, the 5-foot-10, 233-pound fullback out of Eastern Kentucky had only 33 carries. He played in just nine games last year after injuring a shoulder. He caught nine passes, but didn’t carry the ball once.

The Jaguars, however, don’t ask their fullback to carry the ball, only to block for Fred Taylor, who rushed for 1,223 yards behind Shelton’s blocking last season.

Lester is expected to come in and compete for Shelton’s spot. Rookie Trevor Bollers and second-year player Matt Calhoun, both long shots to make the team, are the only other fullbacks on Jacksonville’s preseason roster.

Financial details of Lester’s one-year deal were not released by the Jaguars.

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