With only four games remaining on the regular season schedule, the drive to the postseason continues for CFL teams in Week 16.
B.C. continues its quest for the best overall record in the league against the Hamilton Tiger-Cats at Ivor Wynne Stadium on Friday night. The Lions hold a two-game lead in the West over Calgary and Saskatchewan, thanks to a 27-22 win over the Stampeders at home last week, which officially clinched a playoff spot. Travis Lulay, one of three quarterbacks to start every game this season, ran his consecutive games streak with at least one TD pass to 25, converting 23-of-33 passes for 268 yards and two scores in the win.
Hamilton fell 35-20 to Edmonton on the road last Friday. Quarterback Henry Burris has 12 passing TDs in his last five games versus the Lions. He is first in the league in TD passes this season and leads an offense that ranks first in the CFL in scoring at 30.1 points per game. Unfortunately, the defense stinks and the Kitty Cats rank at the bottom in the league in a number of categories.
The Stampeders are coming off a five-point loss to the Lions. The offense sputtered in the first half, putting up just six points before finally finding a flow in the second half to make up ground. Nik Lewis leads the CFL in yards after the catch with 488. He also has a league-best 84 receptions to go with 8 TDs, second only to Saskatchewan wideout Weston Dressler (10). Calgary is 0-5-1 ATS in its last six meetings in Winnipeg.
The Blue Bombers are finally turning things around with two wins in their last three outings, including a 27-22 upset over Montreal earlier this week. Quarterback Joey Elliott completed 17-of-25 passes for a hearty 335 yards and three touchdowns to earn CFL Offensive Player of the Week honors. Despite the recent improvements in its air attack, Winnipeg is the only team that has more interceptions (16) than touchdowns (13) after 14 games.
The Saskatchewan Roughriders try to run their win streak to four in a row on Saturday when they take on the Edmonton Eskimos at Commonwealth Stadium. The Riders are getting hot at the right time of year, snagging victories in five of their last six opportunities. Saskatchewan has played under the total in its last seven October games.
Quarterback Kerry Joseph put in a good effort for Edmonton as he converted 24-of-39 passes for 359 yards and three touchdowns to three different receivers in last week’s 35-20 victory over Hamilton. The Eskimos have played under the total in seven of their last eight Saturday games.
The Montreal Alouettes try to avoid their first three-game losing streak of the campaign Sunday afternoon when they travel to the Rogers Centre to take on the Argonauts. Quarterback Anthony Calvillo, who is usually soft spoken in his dealings with the media, sounded off after the Als were stunned by lowly Winnipeg on Monday. The 40-year-old was intercepted twice and his only TD pass came late in the fourth quarter of the loss. Alouettes personnel were shocked to hear Calvillo – a man of strong faith – use some foul language after the contest during post-game interviews and it will be interesting to see how the team responds.
The Argonauts are just one game off the pace in the East set by Montreal at the moment, but must be better than they were in Week 15, when they fell 36-10 to the Riders. Quarterback Jarious Jackson, who got the start in place of the injured Ricky Ray (knee), completed just over 50 percent of his passes for a mediocre 162 yards. The two clubs have played over the total in each of their last five meetings.