It’s another week of batting 500 (2 right-2 wrong) in the prediction department for me after a couple of surprises this weekend. It takes a few weeks for teams to settle down, so we can expect anything from a CFL season that is not even old enough to eat baby food.
The third week actually starts tomorrow night when the Calgary Stampeders do a short shift change and play the Toronto Argonauts at Rogers Cavern and Mausoleum.
One thing is really clear to me: Toronto is a vastly improved football team.
They still have receiver issues as they search for guys without rough cut 2-by-4s for hands, but they are a better team with big and very bad-tempered front four guys on defense.
Quarterback Cleo Lemon has delivered a modest blend of ball control with limited mistakes so far in his rookie CFL year.
Calgary is 2-0 after an unlikely win over Hamilton when ultra-cocky former Stamp Sandro DeAngelis completely forgot that he is the most accurate kicker in CFL history.
Football boils down to a handful of crucial errors, and DeAngelis figured in a couple of those mistakes against Calgary.
Wednesday night’s game should be an Argo home victory because their defense can influence a game. Another modest mistake-free game by Lemon will sweeten Toronto’s chances for a win.
I pick the Argos in this rematch.
Winnipeg visits Hamilton in another early season rematch between the clubs. The ‘Cats need this win more than anybody in the early season as they fight to hold onto a skeptical and fickle fan base.
Kevin Glenn will need help from his O-line, run game and his only two receivers that can snag a ball (Bruce and Stala) to win this game.
If the other Ti-Cat receivers ever figure out why they draw a paycheck from the team, Glenn’s job would get a lot easier.
Both teams will be a little grumpy, but I pick Hamilton to win at home.
They have more reasons to be in a bad mood for this game after a 0-2 start.
The Edmonton Eskimos visit Regina this weekend to play the Saskatchewan Roughriders and you do not need to adjust your TV set or medication for this game.
The Riders will play in their original red and black color scheme jerseys as part of their centennial celebrations.
Edmonton has played some ugly football this year in their winless start to the season.
They have trouble finding the end zone and shell-shocked quarterback Ricky Ray has absorbed some brutal punishment already this year.
His O-line is still a problem and Richie Hall’s defense took too many interference penalties against Montreal because they were beaten in cover schemes.
Things will not get better in Saskatchewan for the Eskies.
The Riders are a violently effective pressure defense this year, and the receivers are the most talented group in the league. Look for a big victory from the Jolly Red Giants this weekend.
The Montreal Alouettes continue their extended western road trip as part of their 2010 Baptism by Fire tour with a visit to the new temporary home of the BC Lions. The Als win this one. Friday: Why a CFL All Star team would beat the New Orleans Saints.
More of Jim Sutherland at mystarcollectorcar.com