I never put my predictions into the first week’s column, but I was 2-2 on the Canada Day weekend. So this column will see the return of my picks for this weekend. That way you will have it in writing.
Tonight’s game pits the Toronto Argonauts against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. This game should be the biggest mismatch of the weekend as the Bombers annihilate the Argos in Winnipeg. Bomber pivot Buck Pierce is still in one piece and he is a handful for any CFL defence when he is healthy. On the other hand, Toronto quarterback Cleo Lemon is an old rookie in a new league.
The Bomber defensive front seven may be one of the best in the league, so the CFL lessons will get a little sour for Lemon. I would guess that 1A Toronto quarterback Dalton Bell will get in this game fairly early when Lemon misses his reads of a 12 man defense. It won’t change the final score in this impending massacre.
The Calgary Stampeders will get out of bed early Saturday morning to play the Hamilton Tiger Cats at Ivor Wynne Stadium in Hamilton. Early games in the Eastern time zones are never easy for West Division teams. But this game is a real puzzle for me.
The Stamps looked pretty average in their game against Toronto, while the Ticats looked absolutely brutal against a motivated Bomber team. Which teams will show up tomorrow on the football field? I pick Hamilton to rebound from an ugly effort in the ‘Peg to win against the Stampeders.
Calgary does not have a pressure defence like Winnipeg to put the heat on mobility-challenged Hamilton quarterback Kevin Glenn. Presumably Glenn should have enough time to find superstar receiver Arland Bruce more often in this game. But Hamilton has to replace their right tackle Simeon Rottier (yesterday at the latest) if the ‘Cats want to keep Glenn in one piece. Rottier was absolutely brutal against the Bombers.
The Saturday night game will pit the Saskatchewan Roughriders against the B.C. Lions in the clean fresh air of Empire Field. The game features two undefeated West Division teams, but the Riders will be the only undefeated team when the dust settles in this one.
The Lions defence put a lot of pressure on Eskimo quarterback Ricky Ray, but they will have less success in this department against Saskatchewan. Conversely, the Riders will put a lot of heat on BC quarterback Casey Printers, and Casey looked shaky against the Eskimos.
Rider middle linebacker Barrin Simpson is a better run-stopper than the departed Rey Williams, so B.C. tailback Jamal Robertson will have a much tougher job against the ’Rider defence. Thrown in an aerial assault team from the ’Riders’ offence and home will not be sweet for the Lions on Saturday night.
The final game of the weekend has Montreal in Edmonton for a battle of the defeated in the CFL. Montreal will be in a bad mood on Sunday night, and that will not be a good vibe for the Eskies. Look for a big Montreal win at Commonwealth as the Alouettes look for a little payback from the Rider loss. Remember- Bucs Saturday 6pm at Great Chief.
More of Jim Sutherland at mystarcollectorcar.com