BC Lions at Calgary Stampeders (-11.5)
Friday, September 18: 9:05 PM ET
This game has all the makings of a blowout. BC is coming off a short week following an embarrassing 31-18 home loss to the Ottawa RedBlacks. They are without a legitimate CFL quarterback at the helm and there have been several reports of discontent festering in the Lion locker room between the players and new head coach Jeff Tedford. BC’s only hope in this contest would have been facing a complacent Calgary team coming off back-to-back wins over Edmonton; unfortunately for BC, Calgary lost last week. They’ll be hungry. They’ll beat the Lions. Handily.
Pick straight-up: Calgary
Pick against the spread: Calgary
Edmonton Eskimos at Hamilton Tiger-Cats (-6)
Saturday September 19: 4:05 PM ET
With Mike Reilly back at the helm of the Edmonton Eskimos, this match-up is undoubtedly the game of the week. Edmonton and Hamilton have the CFL’s most explosive defences — yes, I said defences — who are known for racking up a ton of sacks and turnovers. For that reason, I expect this game to be relatively low-scoring despite the fire power these two teams possess on offence. At the end of the day, I’ll take the Ti-Cats based on the play of their offensive line. I’m just not confident Hamilton will cover the six-point spread.
Pick straight-up: Hamilton
Pick against the spread: Edmonton
Ottawa RedBlacks at Saskatchewan Roughriders (-2)
Saturday September 19: 9:05 PM ET
I could understand the 0-9 Saskatchewan Roughriders being favored on Labour Day against the Brian Brohm-led Winnipeg Blue Bombers. I couldn’t understand the 1-9 Saskatchewan Roughriders being favored in the Banjo Bowl against the Matt Nichols-led Winnipeg Blue Bombers. I really can’t understand the 1-10 Saskatchewan Roughriders being favored in this game against the 6-4 Ottawa RedBlacks. I don’t care that Kevin Glenn is back at the helm for the green and white — give me Ottawa and the points. They’re for real.
Pick straight-up: Ottawa
Pick against the spread: Ottawa
Winnipeg Blue Bombers at Montreal Alouettes (-10)
Sunday September 20: 1:05 PM ET
If you’re looking for the most over-inflated point spread of the CFL season, here it is. I really like Montreal’s defence and their veteran offensive line. S.J. Green is one of the CFL’s most dominant receivers and Tyrell Sutton is an underrated ball carrier. With that being said, Montreal’s coaching staff is a mess and the Als are currently the CFL’s worst team under centre. Johnathan Crompton hasn’t played since week one when he put up just fifty-one yards on 5 of 17 pass attempts versus Ottawa. Considering he’ll be operating in a relatively new system — remember, co-offensive coordinators Ryan Dinwiddie and Anthony Calvillo have only been on the job for two weeks — I don’t expect big things from #18. The Als could easily win this one, but I’m taking the Bombers who have played uncommonly well in Montreal over the past four seasons. The ten points are just gravy.
Pick straight-up: Winnipeg
Pick against the spread: Winnipeg
Season record straight-up: 31-17
Season record against the spread: 25-22-1
John Hodge, Blue Bomber Talk