Wednesday, October 7, 2015
CFL THIS WEEK
Hamilton (8-5) suddenly is in dire need of a home win. After winning 10 straight at Tim Hortons Field, the Ticats have dropped three-of-four games there, including last weekend's 23-20 decision to Calgary. Saskatchewan (2-12) has lost three-of-four contests since beating Winnipeg 37-19 for its first victory of the year. Riders running back Jerome Messam has 818 rushing yards - one behind B.C.'s Andrew Harris, the league leader - and is averaging 6.3 yards per carry.
Pick - Hamilton
EDMONTON at CALGARY, SATURDAY 5:00 PM
Mike Reilly and the Edmonton Eskimos will try to do something no other CFL team has this season: Beat the Calgary Stampeders at McMahon Stadium.
The Eskimos (10-4) visit the Stampeders (11-3) in a battle between the league's top two teams. The winner claims the season series and tie-breaker in the event the two squads end the regular campaign with identical point totals.
The defending Grey Cup-champion Stampeders have the league's best home record at 7-0 and are 6-1 within the West Division.
Edmonton is the CFL's hottest team with four straight wins and boasts a defence that's allowing just 18.6 points and 67.1 yards rushing per game, both league lows.
Grey Cup MVP Bo Levi Mitchell leads a Calgary offence that's averaging over 26 points per game and features two potent weapons in receiver Eric Rogers and running back Jon Cornish.
Pick - Calgary
WINNIPEG at BC, SATURDAY 8:00 PM
Winnipeg (4-10) deserved better last week against Edmonton as starter Matt Nichols was 22-of-39 passing for 320 yards and a TD against his former club. But Hajrullahu simply must be better. B.C. (5-8) holds the West Division's third and final playoff position for now. Incumbent Travis Lulay recently came off the six-game injured list but rookie Jon Jennings had four TD strikes in last weekend's 46-20 win over Saskatchewan. It's hard to overlook the Bombers' 3-6 division record.
Pick - B.C
TORONTO at MONTREAL, MONDAY 11 AM
A must-win for Montreal (5-8), which is six points out of the third and final East Division playoff spot and tied with B.C. for the West crossover. The Als haven't played since their 39-17 road loss to Ottawa on Oct. 1 as Henry Burris had a league-record 45 completions. Toronto (8-5) comes off consecutive wins over the Redblacks, including a 38-35 decision Tuesday night thanks to Chad Owens' late one-handed TD grab. It was one of five scoring strikes for Harris, who also threw for 397 yards.
Pick - Toronto.
Last week: 4-1
(Canadian Press/Dan Ralph)