Week 18 saw an instant classic, and a bunch of overall entertaining football. It was a bad week for me. I went 2-2 straight up and 1-3 against the spread. I blame Mike Reilly’s injury and Jon Ryan’s rouge for my bad spread luck. Overall I am now 50-19 straight up and 43-26 against the spread this season. This week there is only playoff position battles as every playoff spot has now been claimed. Let’s see how I see week 19 going.
(3-12) Toronto Argonauts @ (8-7) Montreal Alouettes Friday 7:00pm ET
Toronto is 1-0 with Pinball as their GM. McLeod Bethel-Thompson went 27 of 36 for 300 yards and 2 TDs. Amazing what happens when you play your best QB. S.J. Green became the 18th Player is CFl history with 10,000 receiving yards in the win. This team has some pieces on offence it’s just time for them to add and get more consistent. I could see this being a much better football team next season, they’ve shown glimpses this year. Montreal took one on the chin against a Bombers team that came out angry and played a great game. Montreal has second locked up in the East but has to play strong every week that is left to get ready for playoffs. They can’t get lazy on the field or they will be out of playoffs fast. We will see if they come out hungry against Toronto this week. I think they will.
Prediction: Alouettes win 37-24
(10-5) Saskatchewan Roughriders @ (5-11) B.C. Lions Friday 10:00pm ET
The Riders lost a classic to the Stamps last week. They were in it the whole way through and those two teams will be battling for first in the West the rest of the way. The Riders will have to finish at least one point ahead of the Stamps because Calgary won the season series tiebreak. That means the Riders are going to have to play, playoff style football from here on out. They take on a Lions team without Mike Reilly so all signs point to a win. It was a tough loss for B.C. last week, they had serious thoughts of winning out and stealing the final playoff spot from Edmonton. Their star QB going down early put a halt to that thought. It was a tough game and it gets even tougher this week. I think the Lions will need to play perfect football to win and I haven’t seen them do that this year, even with Reilly under centre.
Prediction: Roughriders win 34-22
(3-12) Ottawa Redblacks @ (12-3) Hamilton Tiger-Cats Saturday 4:00pm ET
Ottawa has had a tough time. They were in the game against Toronto last week and quarterback Will Arndt showed some promise in the loss. He will get the start again this week against the beasts of the CFL. Hamilton has been awesome this season. They win close games, they win by blowing teams out and they can win low scoring battles. This is the best team I have seen out of the East in a long time. They should have no trouble with Ottawa this week.
Prediction: Tiger-Cats win 35-18
(10-6) Winnipeg Blue Bombers @ (10-5) Calgary Stampeders Saturday 7:00pm ET
The Bombers got a much needed win last week over Montreal. Now, if they want to hop back to the top in the West they have to take down the Calgary Stampeders and hope Sask. loses to the Lions, those are a couple of big asks. Winnipeg will need Andrew Harris and the defence to play as good, if not better, than they did last week. Harris had 166 yards and a touchdown on the ground and the defence picked off Vernon Adams Jr. 4 times. If Calgary plays like they did against the Riders last week they should pick up another win. They grinded out a tough game and got back into first. Hopefully they don’t come out flat after that emotional win.
Prediction: Stampeders win 28-23
Week 19 Betting Odds (Bodog):
Toronto @ Montreal: Take MTL -11
Saskatchewan @ B.C: Take SSK -6.5
Ottawa @ Hamilton: Take OTT +17.5
Winnipeg @ Calgary: Take WPG +7
There is the potential for blowouts in a few of the games this week. Some teams are battling for playoff spots while others don’t really have much to play for. I’m interested to see if some of the teams on the outside can play spoiler. It should be fun! Thanks for reading and don’t forget to check out the Squib Kick Radio podcast for more in-depth football talk!