The Eskimos hope they've found the answer at the important position, after an unsuccessful 2012 season.
"Mike has the chance to be an elite quarterback in this league" Eskimos general manager Ed Hervey said in a statement. "This is a step toward stabilizing our quarterback position."
Reilly hasn't played much due to the entrenchment of Travis Lulay as B.C. quarterback, but has shown promise. He's completed 55 of 77 pass attempts for a 68.8 per cent rate during three seasons on the Lions roster, with four touchdowns and two interceptions. He also rushed 34 times for 122 yards and two touchdowns.
The six-foot-three Reilly, who turned 28 last week, played collegiately at Central Washington and spent time on NFL practice squads before heading to Canada.
As part of the deal, the clubs also swapped second round selections in this year’s Canadian draft.
"I was approached by Edmonton GM Ed Hervey seeking permission to talk to Mike before the free agency period began and in light of Mike’s desire to explore opportunities to become a starting quarterback, I believed a trade was doable," Lions GM and coach Wally Buono said in a statement.
Former Eskimos GM Eric Tillman traded quarterback Ricky Ray to Toronto before last season, a trade that was panned, especially after the Argos won the Grey Cup.
Steven Jyles, who came the other way in the deal, was recently released by Edmonton.