CFL FREE PICKS
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CFL Week 13: Sept 02
Week 13 of the CFL is here. If it's anything like the first 12 weeks, don’t expect the expected as the season has been full of twists to keep those who love the three down game tuned in for the latest every week. It is also Labour Day weekend meaning rivalry games are upon us.
Everything starts tonight with Ottawa battling Montreal. I don’t know about you, but I have a hard time watching games featuring two Eastern Conference teams. It's probably because those teams are so bad compared to their Western counterparts, but you gotta play them right?
Ottawa got themselves a win in Edmonton. They looked pretty good, but yes it was Edmonton so take that for what you will. Nick Arbuckle brought some stability to the quarterback position as they have had several in that spot this year. The Alouettes aren’t much better, but they are at home and they are coming off a bye. Right now, the Alouettes are favoured depending on what book you look at somewhere between 4.5 and 5.5 points. I want to take the Alouettes here, but I can’t do that with 100 percent certainty. That 5.5 is a big spread and at the end of the day as much as I want to take Montreal here, I just can’t. I think they beat the Redblacks, but I don’t think they cover. I Look at the numbers and you will see the Redblacks are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 road games while the Alouettes are 4-10 ATS in their previous 14 contests at home. You can look at this a lot of different ways, but at the end of the day, I am going to take Ottawa to cover, but feel free to go with Montreal on the moneyline.
Did the Saskatchewan Roughriders turn the corner with their win over B.C or was it just a blip on the radar? Yes, Cody Fajardo maybe had his best game of the year. Yes, he was a 300 yard passer while Frankie Hickson was a 100 yard runner and yes, the Riders won as their defense held BC to a season-low 16 points, but at the end of the day they won the football game.While the Lions were on their 3rd string quarterback, it was still the number one unit on defense that Saskatchewan rolled up the yards on.
The Labour Day Classic is different. It doesn’t matter what the records of these two teams are. It is a football game that usually provides a memory or two. Winnipeg is the better team. Make no doubt about it. Despite throwing for 300 yards, Fajardo was sacked seven times as that Rider offensive line continued to provide very little protection. Winnipeg is favoured by 3.5 and I would lean that way. At the end of the day, that Riders offense while flourishing against BC should have a tougher time against that Winnipeg defense and with the offensive line being what it is, I see Jackson Jeffcoat and Willie Jefferson having a heyday.
I’ve got them winning this Labour Day Classic in another one of those Winnipeg type games this year where they turn it up a notch in the 4th quarter and do what they have to do to get the “W”. Go with the Bombers to cover.
PICK: Winnipeg -3.5 (-115) at Bet365
Hamilton plays Toronto. This will be the 4th time in the last five weeks that these two teams have butted helmets in what has to be the prime example as to how bad the CFL schedule has been this year. The game is a virtual pick'em. Hamilton at this time is favored by 1. Would that be more if Matthew Shiltz was starting in place of the ineffective Dane Evans. It has been a rough season for Evans, but with Shiltz out he knows he is the man. He needs to start doing what he has done over the past couple of years to give Hamilton a shot at finishing first in the East. The number here that stands out to me is 49.5. The two teams have been over in their last four meetings and their last seven meetings in Hamilton. I see no reason why that trend shouldn’t continue.
PICK: Toronto/Hamilton O49 (-111) on Bet365
That brings us to Elks and the Stampeders. Calgary is a big 12.5-pointhome favorite. Games like this with a big spread scare me because we have seen many times where a team takes its foot off the gas allowing the other team to get some gift touchdowns and covering the spread. I just don’t see that here though, Jake Maier wants to show his performance in Winnipeg was not a fluke. Expect Malik Henry to have another big game and for Calgary to lay a Labour Day beatdown on their Alberta rivals. Hammer some money down on Calgary here whether it be to cover the 12.5 point spread or for it to be over. If that line keeps going up, be wary of where it ends up, but I think you can be safe taking Calgary to win this one and win it rather handily.
Enjoy the games!
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