Free Weekly CFL Picks Against the Spread
Each week during the Canadian Football League season our handicappers break down all the game match ups looking for the best bet on every match. Visit weekly for our handicapping analysis and CFL against the spread picks.
Eight-straight losses have given way to back-to-back victories against Toronto and Ottawa to move the Tiger-Cats to 2-8 with a 4-6 record against the spread. The total has stayed UNDER or ended as a PUSH in their last four games. Hamilton’s defense has stepped up its game the past two outings and, with Glenn’s playing status up in the air, this opens up the door to a play on the UNDER in this game as well.
It has been a tale of two coins for the Eskimos this year. A SU 7-0 start has been replaced with a three-game losing streak both SU and ATS. Edmonton survived numerous close calls during that earlier run as part of an overall record of 3-7 ATS. Before giving up 39 points to rival Calgary last week, the Eskimos got ripped for 54 points in a loss to Saskatchewan and 33 points in a loss to Winnipeg. I am betting on a Stampeders’ sweep both SU and ATS in a game that should also go OVER the 56-point total line.
Winnipeg had put together a SU five-game winning streak while going 4-1 ATS before last week’s setback behind an offense that is averaging 33.2 points per game. The Blue Bombers biggest problem this season has been on the other side of the ball with a defense that has allowed at least 30 points in six of their first 10 games. It is easy to see why the total has gone OVER in eight of those 10 games and why I am riding that trend with a play on the OVER in this game as well.
Ottawa shook off a slow 1-6-1 SU start to rise to the top of the East standings with a current three-game winning streak (SU and ATS) that has it a half-game ahead of Toronto at 4-6-1 SU. The RedBlacks have been a good betting team all season long at 8-3 ATS and the total has stayed UNDER or ended as a PUSH in eight of their last nine games. During this three-game run, Ottawa has averaged 33.3 points on offense while giving up 15.3 points on defense. I am sensing a quick return to Hamilton’s losing ways with the RedBlacks covering the 12 points at home.
The Lions return to action following last week’s bye with a SU three-game losing streak of their own while going a costly 1-4-1 ATS over their last six games. They did get past Montreal earlier this season 23-16 as three-point road favorites as part of an overall SU record of 5-5(4-5-1 ATS). While the half point on the current spread is a bit of a concern, the West’s complete dominance over the East this season points to a BC victory both SU and ATS.
Hamilton is still looking for its first SU victory of the year against eight losses coming off a last week’s bye. The Tiger-Cats are 2-6 ATS and the total has gone OVER or ended as a PUSH in six of those eight games. Their offense is averaging just 18.5 PPG, but the OVER remains a solid play with a defense that is allowing an average of 38.8 points to its opponents. Hamilton may actually get its first SU win of the year on Monday, but I am betting that the total once against goes OVER in this East Division tilt.
Calgary continues to pick up steam in pursuit of another West Division title behind a SU five-game winning streak that also boasts a 4-0-1 record ATS. They have a half-game lead over Edmonton in the standings in what will be the first meeting this season. The Stampeders are averaging 33.1 PPG and their defense leads the league in points allowed (18.8). Look for Calgary to keep things rolling both SU and ATS at the expense of the fading Eskimos.
Saskatchewan is coming off a wild 54-31 upset against Edmonton as a 5.5-point road underdog. The Roughriders’ defense deserves a great deal of the credit with two interceptions returned for touchdowns. Special teams blocked a punt in what was an all-around team effort to end a three-game skid on the road this season. Look for Saskatchewan to put up another good showing at home this Sunday in a game that should easily go OVER an already inflated total line.
The Alouettes continue to struggle with any type of consistency from one week to the next. With last week’s 34-31 loss to Winnipeg, they have now dropped four of their last five games SU while going 2-3 ATS. Montreal was known for playing stout defense, but this unit has allowed a combined 72 points in the last two games. I am sticking with the RedBlacks on Thursday night as they continue to emerge as the only legitimate contender in the East.
The Stampeders closed the gap with Edmonton in the West title race with last week’s PUSH ATS against BC. They are now just a half game off the pace at 6-1-1 SU (4-3-1 ATS). Bo Levi Mitchell has also been one of the top quarterback in the league this season with 2,318 passing yards and 13 passing touchdowns, but he is coming off a rough outing against the Lions where he only connected on 48.4 percent of his 31 throws. I am looking for a solid effort from both of these quarterbacks on Saturday night in a game that goes OVER the current 54.5-point total line.
Ottawa is coming off an almost must-win matchup against Hamilton in which it outscored the winless Tiger-Cats 37-18 as a 3.5-point road favorite. The RedBlacks are now 2-6-1 SU on the year with a profitable 6-3 record ATS. They lost those six games by a combined 20 points. I fully expect Ottawa to keep things moving in the right direction this week with a victory against BC both SU and ATS.
Edmonton will look to get back to its winning ways after falling to the Blue Bombers, but bettors still need to be a bit leery with the Eskimos’ 3-5 record ATS. The total went OVER 57.5 points in last week’s loss and it has gone OVER in four of their last five games. I think that both of these teams should be able to score enough points to take the total OVER the current betting 54-point line this week as well.
The Alouettes put up 40 points in a last-second loss to Winnipeg in Week 6, but with just six points in last week’s loss to Toronto, this offense has now failed to score more than 19 points in five of its first eight games. Montreal has been tough on defense, but I am still going with the Blue Bombers both SU and ATS this Thursday night.
The Lions (5-3 SU, 4-4 ATS) appeared to be legitimate contenders in the West until last week’s 41-8 meltdown against Saskatchewan as three-point road favorites. They are now 1-2 SU in their last three games and 1-3 ATS in their last four. They might want to go back to Travis Lulay at quarterback following Jonathon Jennings’ four interceptions against the Roughriders. Either way, I am going with Calgary to win SU, but with BC to find a way to cover with the 4.5 points.
Hamilton’s current SU losing streak reached seven games after last week’s loss to Winnipeg. It is 2-5 ATS in those seven losses and the total has gone OVER in five of its first seven games. The probability of turning things around anytime soon is not that high behind an offense that is averaging 18.6 PPG complementing a defense that is giving up an average of 39 points. Take Ottawa on the road both SU and ATS in this East Division tilt.
The Blue Bombers have been lighting up the scoreboard lately with at least 33 points in each of their last five games as part of a 4-1 record both SU and ATS. Matt Nichols threw for 267 yards and two scores in last week’s 39-12 rout over Hamilton as two-point road favorites. I do like the OVER in this game despite the high opening line, but my ‘best bet’ pick is to go with Winnipeg handing Edmonton its first SU defeat of the year.
The Alouettes are coming off a bye after posting a SU 2-4 record in their first six games. They are an even 3-3 ATS and the total has stayed UNDER in four of their first six games. While the offense has struggled at times with an average of 23.5 points per game behind veteran Darian Durant at quarterback, Montreal’s defense has kept this team competitive with a points-allowed average of 25 PPG. The Alouettes have a 4-2 edge both SU and ATS in the last six meetings of this bitter division rivalry and I like their chances to get the win at home both SU and ATS this Friday night even with the inflated line. .
Hamilton is bringing up the rear in the East Division at 0-6 SU and it is 2-4 ATS. Last week, the Tiger-Cats hung tough against the CFL’s best team in that five-point loss to Edmonton after getting crushed by Calgary 60-1 on July 29 as 12.5-point road underdogs. While I am not sure that Hamilton will be able to end this slide on Saturday night, I do remain confident that the total in this matchup will go OVER just like it has in five of the Tiger-Cats first six games.
The RedBlacks fell to 1-5-1 SU with last week’s 33-30 loss to Winnipeg as 3.5-point home underdogs, but after covering that spread by the thinnest of margins they improved to 5-2 ATS. Ottawa is scoring an average of 27.7 points a game and it has lost those five games by a combined 13 points. I am betting that this game will also stay close enough for the RedBlacks to cover again this Thursday night.
The Eskimos continue to set the early pace in the CFL in 2017 and there is no real reason to think that things will not go their way this Friday night at home. In that first meeting against Hamilton on the road in Week 5, quarterback Mike Reilly led a fourth-quarter rally to outscore the Tiger-Cats 18-3 to secure the come-from-behind victory. I do not think that things will remain that close this time around with Edmonton putting this game out of reach early to also cover ATS.