Newman was acquired by the Lions in a trade with the Calgary Stampeders on September 4, 2010. The Lions sent their second-round pick in the 2011 Canadian Draft as well as a conditional fourth-round pick in the 2012 Canadian Draft to acquire the BC native. In December 2010, Newman signed a contract extension with the Lions.
After coming to the club from Calgary in a trade and an earlier brief retirement from the CFL, Jesse played a valuable reserve role along the offensive line. He played in the final nine regular season games in addition to the West Semi-Final game at Regina.
Jesse was Injured during training camp, but returned to the starting lineup in Week 2. He played at the left guard position for 10 consecutive games before being sidelined by an injury. But returned to action on Oct. 17 and was back in the starting lineup for both of the Stampeders’ playoff games.
The start of his rookie season was delayed by a knee injury suffered in training camp, but he was healthy in time for the third game of the year as he replaced the injured Godfrey Ellis as the starting left guard. Newman went on to make 15 consecutive starts — 12 at left guard and three at left tackle — before sitting out the regular-season finale. He returned to the lineup in the playoffs and was a standout in the West Final and the Grey Cup. Along with Dimitri Tsoumpas, he was one of two rookie starters on an offensive line that ranked among the league leaders in sacks allowed (30), average rushing yards per game (134.6) and average gain per rush (6.4). They also helped pave the way for the CFL’s leading rusher Joffrey Reynolds.
Named 2007 All-Sun Belt Conference First Team, Newman was a vital part of a Louisiana-Lafayette offensive line that anchored the team’s first ever 3,000-yard rushing team mark. The Cajuns’ 251.6 rushing yards per game ranked first in the SBC and sixth in the nation. He was an honourable mention all-conference player in 2006 and a second-team all-star in 2005. Newman was a four-year starter for the Ragin’ Cajuns, including all 11 games as a true freshman.
Newman lives year-round in Calgary. He played only one season of high school football at South Delta Secondary School in Tsawwassen, B.C. He was selected to play in the Provincial High School Football Senior Bowl and was named Most Valuable Offensive Lineman that season. He played three seasons in the Canadian Junior Football League, including two years with the Victoria Rebels, before heading to college.