CFL picks: Just who do you think you are?

With the craziness of the Labour Day rematches behind us, it’s time to find out if the teams on the rise – Saskatchewan, Hamilton, B.C. – can continue their ascendence. Just three games this week – Edmonton, Toronto and Winnipeg have byes – which is probably a good thing: give us all time to catch our breath.

Montreal Alouettes quarterback Antonio Pipkin throws the ball during first half CFL action against the Toronto Argonauts in Montreal on Friday, August 24, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Peter Mccabe

Friday, Sept. 14
British Columbia at Montreal, 7:30 p.m.

At Montreal, the Alouettes come off the bye looking for a third straight win under starter Antonio Pipkin. He threw for 242 yards with two interceptions in a 21-11 win over Ottawa on Aug. 31, but also ran for 75 yards and a TD. B.C. (4-6) beat the Redblacks last week and is in must-win mode. Receiver DeVier Posey, the 2017 Grey Cup MVP, makes his Lions debut.

Edwards: Travis Lulay has the boys in B.C. believing. Me too. LIONS
Dunk: B.C. should’ve won in Ottawa and Toronto. LIONS
Gasson: Long trip for B.C. ALS
Smith: The Als hype train gets derailed out by an improving B.C. team. LIONS
Hodge: The Als can’t win three in a row… can they? LIONS
Filoso: I’m all in on the Pipkin train. ALS
Ballantine: Pipkin has provided hope, and Montreal is a tough place to win as a road team from out west. ALS
Totals: LIONS 4 ALS 3

Hamilton Tiger-Cats quarterback Jeremiah Masoli, left, runs from Calgary Stampeders’ Micah Johnson during second half CFL football action in Calgary, Saturday, June 16, 2018.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

Saturday, Sept. 15
Calgary at Hamilton, 4 p.m.

Jeremiah Masoli and the Hamilton Tiger-Cats face a stiff test Saturday afternoon.
Hamilton (6-5) hosts the West Division-leading Calgary Stampeders (9-2) at Tim Hortons Field. The Ticats, fresh off a Labour Day sweep of the Toronto Argonauts, have won three straight to move into a first-place tie with Ottawa in the East Division. Calgary comes off a wild 48-42 loss in Edmonton on Saturday night. Juwan Brescacin had Mitchell’s Hail Mary pass in his hands for the game-winning TD but couldn’t hold on in the Eskimos’ end zone.

Edwards: Hamilton has played the Stamps tough the last couple of years. It’s time. TICATS
Dunk: Stamps always refocus after a loss. Ticats make it difficult. STAMPS
Gasson: Hamilton might be improving but they’re not at this level yet. STAMPS
Smith: September 25, 2011, Moncton, NB. The last time Hamilton beat the Calgary. STAMPS
Hodge: Calgary can’t lose two in a row… can they? STAMPS
Filoso: Best team in the league gets the win. STAMPS
Ballantine: 7 turnovers and still scored 42 against the Esks. STAMPS

Saskatchewan Roughriders’ Willie Jefferson (7) celebrates his touchdown after intercepting Winnipeg Blue Bombers’ pass during first half CFL action in the 15th annual Banjo Bowl in Winnipeg Saturday, September 8, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods

Ottawa at Saskatchewan, 9:30 p.m.

At Regina, Saskatchewan (7-4) is the CFL’s hottest team with four straight wins. That includes a Labour Day sweep of Winnipeg. Quarterback Zach Collaros is expected to start for Saskatchewan, which is 5-2 with him under centre. Ottawa (6-5) has lost two straight, having scored just 25 points over that span.

Edwards: That Saskatchewan pass rush against a shaky Ottawa line… RIDERS
Dunk: Just when it seems like both teams are known quantities. REDBLACKS
Gasson: Rider D does it again. RIDERS
Smith: Riders roll Redblacks. RIDERS
Hodge: The Redblacks have fallen and they can’t get up. RIDERS
Filoso: Everyone expects a defensive battle, which is why it’ll be a shootout. Ottawa surprises and ends their slide. REDBLACKS
Ballantine: Ottawa keeps falling off the rails. RIDERS

2018 Records
Edwards: 33-17
Dunk: 31-19
Gasson: 31-19
Smith: 30-20
Hodge: 29-21
Filoso: 28-22
Ballantine: 27-23

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