|Date||Match Up||Rating||Score||Result||Profit||Lead Time||Analysis|
|08-17-19||Montreal v. Calgary -6.5||Top||40-34||Loss||-114||92 h 12 m||Show|
The set-up: After a slow start, the Stampeders can ill afford to take the foot off the gas for the rest of the season. Calgary is in the playoff mix and I think it’ll pull away down the stretch for the comfortable cover. A victory today and the Stamps are in a tie for first place in the division, but a loss and they could wind up all the way in fourth. Note that while covering only once in four games at home this year, Calgary is still 3-1 SU. And despite the Als being 9-2 ATS in their last 11, I definitely believe that they’re in the wrong place at the wrong time here.
The pick: The Alouettes are getting QB Vernon Adams Jr. and RB William Stanback this week, but one has to wonder how effective they’ll be after each sat out last weekend with injury? The Stamps have finally adjusted to QB Nick Arbuckle running the show, entering this one having gone 4-2 SU in their last six. I’m banking on Montreal finally taking a step back here vs. this determined home side. Lay the points.
Calgary Stampeders 10* play
|08-01-19||Hamilton v. Saskatchewan UNDER 49.5||Top||19-24||Win||100||28 h 4 m||Show|
The set-up: Hamilton has opened the season 5-1, but a devastating injury to QB Jeremiah Masoli has seen their Grey Cup odds drop from +225 to +550 because of it. The Ti-Cats now have to make adjustments on the fly in hostile territory vs. a Riders team which has won two straight. This is a great situational play, as I expect Hamilton to have difficulties on the offensive side of things today as the unit looks to adjust after the Masoli injury. The Riders have looked better of late, but with Zach Collaros eligible to return, it’ll be interesting to see what happens to QB Cody Fajardo.
The pick: Note that three out of these teams last four in the series have fallen under the posted number. With Dane Evans now running the show for Hamilton, expect a much more conservative game-plan from the visitors. I believe when you look at the entire situation that each team finds itself in, that this contest does indeed set up as more of a lower-scoring “chess match” on Thursday night.
Hamilton Tiger-Cats/Saskatchewan Roughriders UNDER
|07-26-19||Winnipeg v. Hamilton OVER 52.5||Top||15-23||Loss||-110||12 h 42 m||Show|
The set-up: Winnipeg is rolling at 5-0 and I think the Blue and Gold will keep the foot on the gas in Hamilton this weekend. In fact, many CFL experts are predicting that this will in fact be this year’s Grey Cup matchup, as Hamilton comes in at 4-1. Note that they’ve split their last four games, each winning at home and also winning on the road. It’s true that the last seven games played between these teams have all gone “under” the number, but note that the average total has bee 55.1.
The pick: Take it for what you will as well, but Winnipeg has seen the total go over the number in five of its last six as a road favorite, while Hamilton has seen the total sail over the posted number in all three of its home games thus far. The best in the West vs. the beast in the East. Look for these two teams to open up the playbook and expect this total to sail over sooner, rather than later.
10* TOTAL OF THE WEEK on the over Bombers/Cats.
|07-13-19||Montreal v. Ottawa -9||Top||36-19||Loss||-110||20 h 25 m||Show|
The set-up: The RedBlacks suffered a humbling 29-14 loss at home to the Blue Bombers last weekend and I believe they’ll take out their frustrations on the very contented Alouettes, who scored the 36-29 upset win at home over the Ti-Cats last time out. Montreal got 203 yards and three rushing TD’s from William Stanback last weekend, but I have a hard time seeing the RB producing the same effort here. Ottawa didn’t help itself last week either by posting 110 penalty yards on ten flags.
The pick: Take it for what you will as well, but Montreal is just 3-5 ATS in its last eight as a road dog in the 7.5 to 14 points range, while Ottawa is still 11-6 ATS in its last 17 vs. the division. The stage is set for a big bounce back performance for the RedBlacks. Lay the points.
10* COACH’S CLINIC on Ottawa.
|07-06-19||Calgary v. Saskatchewan OVER 51||Top||37-10||Loss||-110||79 h 49 m||Show|
The set-up: Whoever gets the start for the injured Bo Levi Mitchell, I expect the Stampeders to come out fired up as they look to fill the void of their offensive leader. It’s “next man up” in Calgary this weekend, as it likely turns to Nick Arbuckle to guide the show. Arbuckle helped lead the come-from-behind win over the Lions last weekend, connecting on all nine passes he threw for 93 yards and a TD. But Saskatchewan will be a tough out, as note that the Riders are riding the hot play of QB Cody Fajardo, who had a career-high 430 yards last week vs. Toronto.
The pick: Take it for what you will as well, but Calgary has seen the total go over the number in eight of its last 12 vs. clubs with losing records, while Saskatchewan has seen the total soar over in six of its last eight as a home favorite of seven points or less. This number is a little low.
Calgary Stampeders/Saskatchewan Roughriders OVER
|07-01-19||Toronto +11 v. Saskatchewan||Top||7-32||Loss||-110||60 h 49 m||Show|
The set-up: Toronto won two in a row in the pre-season and then it had a Week 1 “bye.” Last weekend it lost its early momentum and looked flat in the embarrassing 64-14 home loss to the red hot Ti-Cats. With that awkward game out of the way, I believe the hungry visitors keep tonight’s contest much more competitive. Saskatchewan won’t be lacking for motivation either after back-to-back losses to open the 2019 campaign.
The pick: The Riders looked decent in their 44-41 loss at Ottawa, as Cody Fajardo was 27 of 34 in the setback. However, I think the home side gets caught “looking past” the lowly and desperate visiting side. Note as well that Toronto is 7-2 ATS in its last nine following a loss by 40 points or more, while Saskatchewan is just 3-8 ATS in its last 11 after allowing 40 points or more in its previous outings. Grab the points.
|06-28-19||Montreal v. Hamilton UNDER 58||Top||10-41||Win||100||74 h 0 m||Show|
The set-up: Hamllton broke out for a 50 point win over the hapless Argos last week, but I think it has a bit of a letdown in Week 3. In all the Ti-Cats wracked up 604 total yards of offense, including three TD’s from Bralon Addison. Note that this is the first game of a back-to-back home and home series between the clubs, and as such, I’m expecting much more of a defensive affair on Friday night. It’s interesting to note that Hamilton has won four of the last five in this series and in those four victories, they’ve allowed an average of 10.5 points per game (42 in total.) Montreal won’t be rolling over either, as it comes out of its bye week after a Week 1 loss to the Eskimos. Of concern for Montreal fans is that starting QB Antonio Pipkin suffered a knee injury in the loss and he’s expect to miss 4 to 6 weeks. That means that Vernon Adams Jr. is now thrust into the spotlight for the Als.
The pick: The pressure is on Montreal to step up defensively with its No. 1 QB sidelined with injury. There’s no way the visitors can turn this into a “track meet” and expect to hang with the high-flying home side. So with Montreal trying to control the pace of this one from the outset, I do indeed expect this total to sneak below this sky-high number once it’s all said and done.
Hamilton Tiger-Cats/Montreal Allouetes UNDER
|06-15-19||Winnipeg v. BC||Top||33-23||Loss||-104||15 h 9 m||Show|
The set-up: BC acquired the biggest free agent on the market in the offseason in QB Mike Reilly, who returns to his former team. Reilly signed a large four year contract and the Grey Cup Champion and ex MVP will be expected to step up quickly and pay immediate dividends. The Blue Bombers have fared well vs. the Lions ATS over the last few seasons, but QB Matt Nichols is coming off a poor 2018 in which he had just one three-hundred yard game. Nichols will be leaning heavily upon the CFL’s leading rusher Andrew Harris.
The pick: These teams are no strangers to each other obviously, but I think that Reilly is the difference maker on opening night. The Leo’s hit the road for three straight after this and I think they put the foot on the gas and find a way to get the job done at the end of the night.
BC Lions (Moneyline)
|11-18-18||Winnipeg v. Calgary -4.5||Top||14-22||Win||100||148 h 36 m||Show|
The set-up: The 11-8 Winnipeg Blue Bombers get ready to take on the 13-5 Calgary Stampeders in the CFL West Final and in my opinion, home field can not be overlooked as a very real deciding factor/advantage for the Stamps. Winnipeg has won six of seven and QB Chris Streveler has a 29/18 TD/INT. Calgary QB Bo Levi Mitchell has 5,124 yards and a 35/14 TD/INT.
The pick: Take it for what you will, but Calgary is 7-2 ATS in its last nine home games as a favorite in the 3.5 to 7.5 points range. Lay the points, play on the Stamps.
|11-11-18||BC +3 v. Hamilton||Top||8-48||Loss||-120||143 h 30 m||Show|
The set-up: BC Lions’ QB Travis Lulay is completing just over 60 percent of his passes for 2,494 yards, 13 TD’s and 11 INT’s. The BC ground game averages 94 YPG. Defensively the Lions allow 26.3 PPG and 361.3 YPG. While BC enters the playoffs having split its last six games, the Ti-Cats enter having lost three straight. Note that Hamilton has lost three of its last four at home. QB Jeremiah Masoli has been a bright spot with a 28/18 TD:INT.
The pick: Take it for what you will though, but Hamilton is a poor 2-6 ATS in its last eight at home, while BC is 5-2 ATS in the last seven in this series. The Ti-Cats are currently being outscored by 7.7 points average during their three-game skid and everything points to another letdown here as well. Grab the points.
|07-21-18||Winnipeg -2 v. Toronto||Top||38-20||Win||100||27 h 34 m||Show|
The set-up: Winnipeg will be eager to get back on track here after falling 20-17 at BC last weekend, a game in which it held a 17-0 half-time lead. The Blue Bombers open a home and home set against an Argos team which just finished splitting a home and home series with the Eskimos.
The teams: Winnipeg QB Matt Nichols threw three second half INT’s last weekend and his team would fall to a disappointing 2-3 on the season. RB Andrew Harris though was a bright spot with 139 yards on the ground. Harris now leads the league with 449 rushing yards over five games.
The Argos go with QB James Franklin again, as he makes his third start in place of the injured Ricky Ray (lost for the season.) Last week Franklin looked to receiver SJ Green, who had 110 yards on ten catches last weekend. Previous to that though Green had just 105 yards total over three games to open the season. RB James Wilder Jr. looked pathetic last week though with just 26 yards of offense.
The pick: Take it for what you will as well, but Winnipeg is a perfect 3-0 ATS in its last three as a road favorite of three points or less, wile Toronto is a terrible 11-17 ATS in its last 28 when playing the role of underdog. I think Nichols bounces back, while all sins point to Franklin and company struggling again. Lay the points, play on the Bombers.
|07-20-18||BC v. Ottawa OVER 53||Top||25-29||Win||100||34 h 32 m||Show|
The set-up: Both team’s are 2-2 to open the season. While the “under” may be 3-0-1 in the last four in this series, I’m predicting that these two hungry sides open up the playbook and push the pace from start to finish, ultimately pushing this one “over” once it’s all said and done.
The teams: This is the first meeting between the clubs this year, but last season the Redblacks won both match ups.
BC will be out for revenge, but it’ll also be looking to build off its come from behind 20-17 victory over Winnipeg last weekend. The Lions are still desperate for a breakout offensive performance, having not scored more than 22 points in a game this year. Travis Lulay returned from injury and he looked good for BC, going 28 of 41 for 326 yards and a TD. The Lions have struggled with consistency on the road, so they clearly won’t be taking anything for granted here.
Ottawa will be eager to take out its frustrations after a dismal 27-3 loss to Calgary last week at home. The Redblacks managed just 169 total yards of offense. QB Trevor Harris passed for only 93 yards and was picked twice.
The pick: While each team struggled offensively last week, I believe the conditions are right for a more wide open affair between these two non-conference opponents. Take it for what you will as well, but BC has seen the total go “over” the number in four of its last six as a road dog in the 3.5 to 7 points range, while Ottawa has seen the total go “over” in four of its last six as a home fav in the same points range. Play the “over.”
|07-19-18||Saskatchewan +11.5 v. Hamilton||Top||31-20||Win||100||69 h 29 m||Show|
The set-up: The Roughriders are 2-2 and the Ti-Cats are also 2-2. Hamilton doesn’t have a QB controversy on its hands right now, with Jeremiah Masoli under center. Saskatchewan has issues at the QB position however, with Brandon Bridges seeing time for an injured Zach Collaros this year. Regardless of that fact though, I believe the visitors will keep this one a lot more competitive than what this line would suggest.
The teams: Note that the Riders have won five of their last seven road games outright. Bridges will be leaning heavily on his run game here, a unit which has so far averaged 103.8 YPG. Jerome Messam so far has 110 yards on 32 carries. Defensively though Saskatchewan has been tough, allowing 23.8 points and 366 yards per game. Keep your eyes on Derrick Moncrief, who leads the teams with 20 tackles thus far.
Masoli is so far completing 65.8 percent of his passes for 1,378 yards and four touchdowns. He also has four INT’s though. The ground game is averaging 114.8 YPG, led by Mercer Timmis, who has 175 yards and four touchdowns already. Hamilton has also been strong on the defensive side this year, allowing an average of 21 points and 338.8 YPG.
The pick: Take it for what you will, but Saskatchewan is 5-2 in is last seven following its bye week, while Hamilton is still only 4-10-2 ATS in its last 16 home games. The Roughriders have won four straight in this series and while I’m definitely not calling for an outright upset here or anything like that, as I stated off the top, I do believe that everything points to this one coming right down to the wire. Grab as many points as you can, play on Saskatchewan.
|07-14-18||Winnipeg v. BC +4.5||Top||17-20||Win||100||14 h 47 m||Show|
The set-up: While I wouldn’t be completely shocked by an outright upset, I look for the hungry home side to at the very least take this one right down to the wire. In fact, it’s an “immediate revenge” scenario after BC lost 41-19 in Winnipeg last weekend. BC has struggled against Winnipeg for a couple of years now, but I expect that trend to finally start going the other way this weekend.
The teams: Winnipeg got a big game defensively from LB Adam Bighill, who faced his former team for the first time last week as he’d post six tackles and make two interceptions. QB Matt Nichols was pretty mediocre though, going 16 of 27 for 162 yards.
BC comes in focused, as it comes in off back-to-back losses, allowing 82 points in the process. The Lions struggled on both sides of the ball last week, but desperation breeds motivation in my opinion. Both the struggling Jon Jennings and the injured Travis Lulay took snaps in practice this week.
The pick: Note that the Blue Bombers are interestingly just 2-6 ATS in their last eight after scoring 40 points or more in their previous contest. I’m banking on BC bouncing back and fighting for its life in this revenge spot in front of the home town crowd. Grab the points.
|07-13-18||Toronto v. Edmonton -9.5||Top||15-16||Loss||-105||34 h 18 m||Show|
The set-up: Toronto was down starting QB Ricky Ray and it was a 3.5 point underdog at home to these very Eskimos last week and the winless Argos would prevail outright with the 20-17 victory. Suffice it to say, I think it’s going to be pay-back time in a big way in Alberta on Friday night.
The teams: The 20 points scored by the Argos was the most they’ve put up so far this year and the 17 points allowed was the least. QB James Franklin was an efficient 16 of 22 for 217 yards, with one passing and one rushing touchdown. Declan Cross caught the winning TD pass with three minutes to play. RB James Wilder Jr. had 120 rushing yards and a score as well.
The Eskimo’s looked “out of sorts” from the “get go” last week, but I think a little home cooking is just what the doctor ordered for Edmonton to get back on track. QB Mike Reilly was still decent in the setback, going 28 of 40 for 370 yards, one touchdown and an interception. Reilly leads the league in passing with 1,390 yards and seven major scores. 12 penalties for 126 yards was just too much for Edmonton to overcome in the end though.
The pick: Neither team has been very good for bettors over the last few seasons, but I think the difference will be the immediate “revenge factor.” Edmonton hurt itself with sloppy and undisciplined play last week and I have a hard time seeing the home side not coming in completely focused here as it looks to atone for its sub-par effort. Toronto backup Franklin looked decent at home last weekend, but I think he’ll stumble in this hostile environment. Everything points to a blowout, lay the points.
|07-12-18||Calgary -3.5 v. Ottawa||Top||27-3||Win||100||32 h 32 m||Show|
The set-up: Calgary comes in off its bye and I look for it to continue its unbeaten 3-0 start to the 2018 campaign with another convincing victory here. These teams met in Calgary in Week 3 and the Stamps prevailed 24-14 and suffice it to say, I think an even bigger blowout is in the cards tonight.
The teams: Bo Levi Mitchell had 251 yards and two touchdowns, while Don Jackson had 84 yards a TD for Calgary in Week 3 week over Ottawa. Redblacks’ QB Trevor Harris though had just 135 yards and pick before being pulled.
Mitchell so far has 872 yards and six TD’s this season, while Jackson already has 294 yards rushing.
Harris bounced back last week in Ottawa’s 28-18 win at Montreal with 342 yards and three TD’s, but clearly he’s going to have a much more difficult time tonight against the league’s No. 1 defense, a unit which has given up just 34 points over three games thus far.
The pick: Calgary is interestingly 6-1 ATS in its last seven Thursday night games, performing well on the “short week” (despite coming off its bye), while Ottawa is a terrible 2-5 ATS in its last seven following a victory. Expect a rested and focused Calgary to pull away for the comfortable win/cover as the game comes down the stretch.
|07-07-18||BC v. Winnipeg OVER 55.5||Top||19-41||Win||100||71 h 51 m||Show|
The set-up: Note that this is the opener of a home and home set between these teams and it marks the only time that they’ll face each other in the regular season for the remainder. Over the last three years they’ve met eight times (including playoffs) and the Bombers are 5-3 in those games, including 3-1 on home field. To break this string, the Lions are going to have open things up and look to catch the home side off guard.
The teams: BC looks to reverse its fortunes after its humbling 41-22 beatdown loss in Edmonton last week: “This is our first taste of adversity,” said Lions Head Coach Wally Bruno after. Keep your eyes on WR Emmanuel Arceneaux, who has 106 yards on the season, but who is still looking for his first TD.
Winnipeg can’t take anything for granted here obviously as it tries to find its identity without star QB Matt Nichols directing the show, as he’s still three weeks away from returning from injury. Backup Chris Streveler has his team at 1-2 on the year. The Bombers have struggled defensively though at times this season, in the two losses the unit has allowed 777 yards combined through the air.
The pick: So can BC’s Jon Jennings, who hasn’t thrown for over 200 yards in two games this year, step up and take advantage? He’s going to be given the green light in this one as BC is desperate to get back into the winners circle. Winnipeg will also be looking to “air it out.” This number is just a little low, play the “over.”
|07-07-18||Edmonton -3 v. Toronto||Top||17-20||Loss||-106||68 h 51 m||Show|
The set-up: Toronto won the 2017 Grey Cup in a stunning upset of the Calgary Stampeders, but so far the team has looked horrible in 2018 with an 0-2 start. Edmonton will look to take advantage here now and build off its 41-22 home win over the Lions last week.
The teams: CJ Gable had a career day rushing for Edmonton last week, going for 165 yards on 23 carries, while also adding a TD for the Esks. Mike Reilly was 22 of 30 for 326 yards and three major scores, while also rushing for a TD. WR D’Haquille Williams had six catches for 129 yards.
Toronto has so far managed just 26 points on the season and with starting QB Ricky Ray out for the season with a neck injury (career ending?) James Franklin is suddenly being thrust into a very difficult situation. Franklin was an unremarkable 8 of 13 for 65 yards and a rushing score in relief of Ray last week.
The pick: Note that Edmonton has covered in five of its past six road games. Note that Toronto is just 4-10 ATS in its last 14 against clubs with winning records. The injury to Ray is devastating for an Argo’s team which was already struggling across the board. I think Reilly and company come in and calmly conduct their business and take full advantage of this favorable situation. Lay the points.
|07-06-18||Ottawa -7.5 v. Montreal||Top||28-18||Win||100||46 h 46 m||Show|
The set-up: Ottawa lost 24-14 in Calgary last week and it’ll be eager to return to the winners circle in this favorable matchup on Friday night. Montreal was a 10.5 point home underdog to Saskatchewan last weekend and it pulled off the huge 23-17 outright upset. Can anyone say “letdown spot” in Week 4?
The teams: Redblacks’ QB Trevor Harris struggled against Calgary’s elite defense, going 13 of 29 for 135 yards and an INT. The only bright spot on offense was RB William Powell, who had 113 yards on the day. And while the offense looked terrible overall, the defense was pretty good, forcing three turnovers in the end.
Montreal’s defense looked great last week as well, holding the Roughriders to 278 total yards. The offense though wasn’t great, with just 264 yards. QB Jeff Mathews was 8 of 12 for 98 yards.
The pick: Ottawa though has covered five straight in Montreal and I think everything points to that strong trend continuing here. Also note that the Redblacks have covered their last four following a loss. The moral of the story behind this pick, is to not “over-react.” Everything points to a blowout from start to finish in this one in my opinion, play on Ottawa.
|07-05-18||Hamilton v. Saskatchewan +7.5||Top||13-18||Win||100||23 h 22 m||Show|
The set-up: The Hamilton Tigercats went 1-1 on a season opening road trip and then returned home for a convincing 31-17 victory over Winnipeg in Week 3. The Roughriders will be hungry here though, as they come in sitting at just 1-2 and off a humbling 27-13 loss to lowly Montreal as a 10-point fav last time out.
The teams: Saskatchewan was 2-0 in this series last year, but the Roughriders clearly can’t take anything for granted against this much improved Hamilton team.
Hamilton’s Jeremiah Masoli had 369 yards an a TD last week for the Ti-Cats and the defense held the Bombers to just 280 yards. The run game also looked decent as Mercer Timmis had two short TD runs.
QB Brandon Bridge had to start in place of the injured Zach Collaros last week for Saskatchewan and while he’d stumble in that one, I think he’ll be much more competitive this time around.
The pick: With a game to make adjustments after losing Collaros, I think Winnipeg will look a lot better this week. This is Hamilton’s third road game in the first four weeks and after playing at such a high level, including posting back to back SU/ATS victories, everything finally points to a letdown in my opinion (note that Hamilton is 0-2 ATS in its last two after two more SU wins, while Saskatchewan is 6-4 ATS in its last ten after two or more consecutive SU losses.) Grab as many points as you can, play on the Roughriders.
|06-30-18||Montreal +11.5 v. Saskatchewan||Top||23-17||Win||100||106 h 58 m||Show|
The set-up: The Als are coming off an embarrassing home loss and they’ll be eager to quickly erase that memory. They now perhaps thankfully hit the road for a matchup against an equally as hungry Roughriders side in Saskatchewan. Montreal is 0-2 to open the season, while Saskatchewan is 1-1.
The teams: Montreal will be eager to avoid its first 0-3 start since the 1996 season. QB Drew Willy will be expected to step up here. In all fairness though, he hasn’t been terrible over the first two games, completing 68.3 percent of his passes for 392 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. The combination of Ernest Jackson and Chris Williams has been decent with 196 receiving yards. The ground game has been poor with 72 yards per game, but the major problem has been on the defensive side, so far allowing 39 points and 444 yards per game.
Riders’ QB Zach Collaros hasn’t been great in the early going, with 309 yards, two touchdowns and two picks. The ground game has been decent with 102.5 yards per game average. The defense though has been nothing special, allowing 29.5 points and 375 yards per game.
The pick: It’s not going to be a pretty season for the Als, but they couldn’t have asked for a better opponent to try and score an upset against. Saskatchewan has looked poor overall and while I’m not in fact going to predict an outright victory, I do think that the stage is set for a competitive battle. Grab the points, play on the Alouettes.
|06-29-18||Winnipeg +4.5 v. Hamilton||Top||17-31||Loss||-109||80 h 4 m||Show|
The set-up: Both the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and Hamilton Tigercats come in with identical 1-1 records. The Blue Bombers though have won six of their last eight road games and while I would of course not be completely shocked by an outright upset, I will in the end recommend grabbing the points.
The teams: Winnipeg is led by QB Chris Streveler, who has 424 yards, six touchdowns and two interceptions. His favorite targets have been Darvin Adams and Weston Dressler, who have combined for 195 receiving yards and two touchdowns. The ground game has been dominant as well, averaging 191 yards per contest thus far, with Andrew Harris leading the charge with 135 on 29 carries. The defense hasn’t been shabby either, allowing 21.5 points and 341 yards per game.
Hamilton has lost six of its last eight home games. QB Jeremiah Masoli so far has 676 yards, three touchdowns and two interceptions over the first two games. Jalen Saunders and Luke Tasker have combined for 325 receiving yards and two major scores. Defensively the Ti-Cats are allowing 24.5 points and 388.5 yards per game.
The pick: Take it for what you will, but Winnipeg is 21-8 ATS in its last 29 on the road, while Hamilton is just 3-10-2 ATS in its last 15 at home. After back-to-back road games to open the season, I think Hamilton suffers a predictable letdown here, leaving the back door open for the hungry visitors. Play on the Blue Bombers.
|06-28-18||Ottawa v. Calgary UNDER 57||Top||14-24||Win||100||58 h 59 m||Show|
The set-up: Ottawa comes in off a satisfying 40-17 upset win over Saskatchewan in its season opener, while Calgary is so far 2-0. East meets West in the Week 2 Opener and I’m expecting more of a defensive battle in this one.
The teams: Trevor Harris had 345 yards, two touchdowns and an interception in his season opener for the Redblacks. Greg Ellingson was his favorite target with eight catches for 104 yards. William Powell had 94 yards on 18 carries with one major score.
The Stamps have been upset in the Grey Cup in each of the last two years and anything less but a trip to the big thing would be viewed as a major disappointment this year. So far QB Bo Levi Mitchell has been solid with 621 yards passing, four TD’s and one INT. Receiver Eric Rogers has six catches for 144 yards and two touchdowns.
The pick: Note as well that Ottawa has seen the total go “under” the number in six of its last eight on the road. These defenses are both underrated though in my opinion and I think the stage is set for those units to step up here on the short week and become the main storyline in tomorrow’s summaries. Play the “under.”
|06-23-18||Calgary v. Toronto UNDER 51.5||Top||41-7||Win||100||30 h 59 m||Show|
The set-up: Note that this is the second highest total on the board in Week 2. In the 2017 Grey Cup, Calgary was a seven-point favorite, but it would get upset for a second straight year in the “big game” 27-24. A Matt Black interception of Bo Levi Mitchell in the end zone with eight seconds remaining was a dramatic finish to a great upset.
The teams: Calgary looked sharp on both ends of the field in its 28-14 win over visiting Hamilton in Week 1. The Stamps though would only pull away in the fourth quarter with a 19-3 run. Mitchell struggled, going just 17 of 36 for 297 yards, a touchdown and an interception. RB Don Jackson was a bright spot with 87 yards on 12 carries.
Toronto was a three-point fav in Saskatchewan in Week 1, but the defending champs fell flat in the 27-19 setback. The Argos looked bad offensively, posting just five points through the first three quarters. QB Ricky Ray had just 233 yards, with no touchdowns and one interception. RB James Wilder Jr. was also a major disappointment with 17 total rushing yards. The Argos’ bright spot was their play on the defensive side in the Week 1 loss.
The pick: These teams have a long history of playing to lower-scoring defensive battles as well, as five of their last six in the series have gone “under” the posted number. Everything points to another tight/lower-scoring war in this one as well. Play the “under.”
|06-22-18||Winnipeg -3 v. Montreal||Top||56-10||Win||100||11 h 6 m||Show|
The set-up: Both teams come in off Week 1 losses. Winnipeg lost a 33-30 heartbreaker at home to the Edmonton Eskimos, while Montreal had a predictable letdown in BC. The Bombers lost their starting QB in the final preseason tune-up, but their backup played well and I think he’ll carry that progression over here.
The teams: Winnipeg was forced to start Chris Streveler in Week 1 due to the injury to Matt Nichols. Streveler though posted a respectable first performance with three touchdowns and two interceptions. Darvin Adams and Weston Dressler combined for 120 receiving yards and two touchdowns. RB Andrew Harris had 77 yards on 14 carries, part of 137 total yards on the ground for Winnipeg. The Blue Bombers looked poor on the defensive side, but clearly the team catches a break facing the impotent Al’s offense.
Montreal QB Drew Willy had 281 yards, one TD and one INT against the Lions last week. Note though that Willy has one or less touchdown passes in each of his last eight games. Montreal’s ground game stalled as well with just 78 total yards. RB Tyrell Sutton was a bright spot with 65 rushing yards on 15 carries. The Al’s looked decent defensively, allowing 300 yards and 22 points, led by Chris Ackie with six tackles.
The prediction: Take it for what you will though, but Winnipeg is 21-8 ATS in its last 29 on the road, while Montreal is just 5-16 ATS in its last 21 at home. Not only that but the Blue Bombers are 6-1 in their last seven played in Montreal. The Al’s offense is still a major question mark and I have a hard time seeing the unit keeping up with Streveler and company. Lay the points.
|06-21-18||Saskatchewan v. Ottawa OVER 50||Top||17-40||Win||100||20 h 20 m||Show|
The set-up: The Roughriders will hope to open the season with a 2-0 record after beating the Toronto Argonauts handily in Week 1. Ottawa will have different plans obviously as it kicks off its 2018 campaign
The teams: Saskatchewan has won four straight on the road dating to last year. QB Zach Collaros had 203 yards and a TD last week, to go along with zero INT’s. Duron Carter and Caleb Holley combined for 83 receiving yards. Jerome Messam though leads a strong running attack which posted 111 yards last week.
The Redblacks were 8-9-1 last year, but they’ll be looking to improve those numbers with QB Trevor Harris, who helped his team finish third in the league in total points scored last season.
The pick: It’s a quick turnaround for the Roughriders, who have to travel across the country for this one. Take it for what you will, but Saskatchewan has seen the total go “over” the number in 12 of its last 19 non-conference games. This one has the feel of a wide open “shootout,” rather than a “chess match.” Play the “over.”
|06-16-18||Montreal v. BC -6.5||Top||10-22||Win||100||83 h 49 m||Show|
The set-up: Montreal only won three games last year and I think it’ll struggle on the road to open the 2018 campaign. The Lions struggled last year as well with just seven victories, as BC would miss the postseason for the first time since 1996. The Lions though feature depth and veteran leadership which I believe will help the team on Opening night. Everything points to a home side blowout.
The teams: Montreal is now led by coach Mike Sherman, former Green Bay head boss. Drew Willy is experienced under center and he has a trio of decent playmakers in BJ Cunningham, Tyrell Sutton and Ernest Jackson. Note though that the defense finished dead last in total points allowed last season and that side of the ball is once again expected to be the team’s weak point.
BC missed the playoffs, but it still finished third in the CFL in passing yards a year ago. Top receivers Bryan Burnham, Emmanuel Arceneaux and Jon Jennings are all back to make amends. Like their counterpart today, the main issue for the Lions last season was on the defensive side of the ball.
The pick: Take it for what you will though, but the Al’s are 0-6 ATS in their last six on the road and just 5-16 ATS in their last 21 in BC. I like the Lions to put on an offensive show in front of the home town crowd on Opening weekend as everything points to another road letdown for the still re-building Als. Play on BC.
|06-16-18||Hamilton +9.5 v. Calgary||Top||14-28||Loss||-110||80 h 50 m||Show|
The set-up: Calgary is always one of the top teams favored to win the Grey Cup (at least over the last decade.) Hamilton though won’t be rolling over and while I’m going to stop short in calling for the outright upset, I do expect the hungry visitors to at the very least keep this one close enough with the big spread.
The teams: Hamilton has won just 13 games over the last two seasons, but it got a spark over the last two months with the addition of oft-maligned QB Johnny Manziel. Manziel is starting as the backup QB, but the ex Texas A&M pivot will be expected to come in and replace starter Jeremiah Masoli at some point. Returning from last year are the team’s top two receivers in Luke Tasker and Jalen Saunders, a duo which combined for over 2,300 receiving yards and 11 TD’s. The Ti-Cats achilles heel was on the defensive side of the ball a year ago, but the return of key players such as Richard Leonard and Larry Dean is expected to help the unit make strides in 2018.
Calgary has lost the Grey Cup in each of the last two seasons in heart-breaking fashion and while it’ll be coming into the 2018 campaign with a collective “chip on its shoulder,” I think it will in fact come in a bit complacent here against its lowly non-conference opponent. The offense is once again led by Bo Levi Mitchell, who has 19,000 yards and 115 TD’s over four years as a starting QB with the team. The Stamps were the best defensive team in the league last year, allowing 349 total points, while also collecting 50 sacks.
The pick: Take it for what you will though, but the Ti-Cats are 6-0 ATS in their last six road games, while the Stamps are just 2-5 ATS in their last seven in this series when playing in front of the home town crowd. This one has “competitive battle” written all over it.