June 19, 2024

Miami wide receiver Charleston Rambo (11) during an NCAA football game on Saturday, Sept 18, 2021 in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Doug Murray)

Rookie American receiver Charleston Rambo arrived late to training camp, but not only did he make the Alouettes roster, he also displaced Tevin Jones, a free-agent addition from Saskatchewan. Now, he’s wearing number 14, which was Jones’s number throughout camp.

Rambo’s achievements in just three weeks are remarkable. As the regular season kicks off Thursday night in Winnipeg with a Grey Cup rematch against the Blue Bombers, there are high hopes for the Cedar Hill, Texas native.

“I just came in, focused on all the details, the different rules out here, obviously the waggle, and the specifics of the plays,” Rambo said Tuesday after practice at Stade Hébert in St-Léonard. “The first thing was learning the playbook, talking to my coaches, my quarterbacks. I needed all the information I could get because I’m new here.

Tyler Van Dyke, Charleston Rambo recognized by ACC ahead of Miami's  showdown at Florida State

“Coming from Dallas, it’s different,” the 24-year-old added. “There are guys that play football, but in Texas, we really play football. I had to come in 100 percent confident, being myself. That’s all I can do. Bringing my power and strength to focus and complete my mission.”

Despite likely earning less than Jones, Rambo secured his spot on the roster through his performance in camp and exhibition games. Against Toronto, he caught four passes for 71 yards. Last Friday against Ottawa, he caught three passes for 67 yards.

Though listed at only 177 pounds, the 6-foot-1 Rambo is a playmaker who will add speed to the Alouettes’ offense. He played collegiately at Oklahoma and Miami and had brief NFL stints with Carolina and Philadelphia. After being waived/injured by the Eagles and receiving an injury settlement, he signed with Montreal on May 13, two days into camp.

In 29 games with the Sooners, Rambo caught 76 passes for 1,180 yards and scored nine touchdowns. He caught a 49-yard touchdown pass in the 2019 Orange Bowl against Alabama before transferring to Miami in 2021. With the Hurricanes, Rambo caught 79 passes for 1,172 yards and added seven touchdowns, earning second-team All-ACC honors.

“It was impressive to watch what Rambo did in the games,” said Als receivers coach Mike Lionello. “The lights weren’t too big for him. In the second game, he only had three catches, but one was incredible, and he also drew three pass interference penalties. You can see his competitiveness and mental sharpness. It has been very impressive.

“He’s incredibly fast, has a quick twitch, and competes physically, too. He’ll block effectively and then get back for the next play. He made several plays down the field in those two games. Watching his potential and what he can become in this league is exciting. Rambo came in as a rookie, learned everything quickly, and seized the opportunity when it came. You have to give him all the credit in the world.”

Rambo is deeply religious and supremely confident. He said he slept well Friday night, knowing the final cuts were coming Saturday, and didn’t worry about the outcome. He is thankful that management believes in and trusts him enough to put him in this position. Staying healthy through three weeks of camp and making plays worked in his favor.

Sooners head coach Lincoln Riley once said of Rambo, “The kid can really run. He’s got nice hands and an intriguing skill set.”

Rambo takes pride in his route-running. He believes he has big-play ability and can stretch the field for quarterback Cody Fajardo. Rambo is confident he can get open on every play, and the wider and longer Canadian field should play to his strengths.

Nice catch: Montreal Alouettes name Mike Lionello receivers coach -  3DownNation

“I’m always confident,” Rambo said. “I don’t worry about much. Me versus anybody, I’ll take me. It’s always me. This is Game 1 of the season. I want to put my best foot forward, go out, and show that I’m ready for anything. I know the team is behind me.”

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