The Toronto Argonauts are favoured to win their rivalry matchup against the Hamilton Tiger-Cats on Saturday by less than a field goal, but Hall of Fame receiver Nik Lewis won’t be putting any money down for a very specific reason.
The legendary pass-catcher joined The Rod Pedersen Show on Friday to weigh in on this week’s slate of games and made clear he wouldn’t be betting on Toronto.
“I wouldn’t put the Argos by two because Boris Bede will probably miss two or three field goals,” Lewis stated coldly.
A native of France, Bede has often been plagued by bouts of inaccuracy throughout his seven-year CFL career. The 32-year-old kicker has been an average 14-of-18 on field goals so far in 2022 but shanked a game-tying point-after attempt in Week 4 against Winnipeg that cost his team the game.
Asked what he thought was happening to make Bede miss such crucial kicks, Lewis did not hold back.
“The same thing that always happens to him; he’s mentally weak,” he stressed. “He’s never prepared to the level that he needs to prepare to and he relies on his leg strength.”
Bede has connected on 183 of the 222 field goals he’s attempted in his career — an 82.4 percent hit rate — while connecting on 158 of his 172 extra point attempts. The Laval product has made his living as a three-tool specialist, also handling kickoffs and punts, but has handed off punting duties this season.
Lewis believes his production has not been good enough, a long-held belief from the three seasons they spent together as teammates with the Montreal Alouettes. That time included a 2016 season in which Bede made just 11-of-21 field goals for an atrocious 52.4 percent.
“Somebody’s got to push him. I used to have the conversation with him all the time in Montreal. It’s like, when are you going to become the person you should be? Find greatness,” Lewis recalled.
“You go out here and you’re lackadaisical and then you miss one. No, it’s not that. You understand you’ve lost a game this year and then you put the team in a bad situation. He’s got to step up.”
Despite Lewis’ complaints, Bede was a perfect two-for-two in his last outing against Ottawa and will be looking to continue that momentum against Hamilton.