CFL Betting Notes - Week 4
July 15, 2014
By David Schwab
The run from worst to first for both Winnipeg and Edmonton continued into Week 3 of the new CFL regular season. The Blue Bombers outlasted Montreal last Friday 34-33 as three-point road underdogs to remain perfect on the year at 3-0 both straight-up and against the spread. The total in that game went OVER the closing 48 ½-point line. The Eskimos improved to 3-0 SU with a 27-11 victory over Ottawa in Friday’s other game as five-point home favorites. That total stayed UNDER the 53-point line.
This past Saturday’s double-header started with Calgary running all over Toronto 34-15 as a two-point favorite on the road. The total stayed UNDER a closing betting line of 55 points in that contest. Week 3 closed things out with British Columbia snapping a two-game skid with a 26-13 victory over defending Grey Cup Champion Saskatchewan as a five-point underdog on the road. The total in this game also stayed UNDER with the closing line set at 51 ½ points.
Thursday, July 17
Edmonton Eskimos (3-0 SU, 2-1 ATS) vs. Winnipeg Blue Bombers (3-0 SU, 3-0 ATS)
Point-Spread: Winnipeg -3
The Eskimos are now just one win away from matching last season’s SU total behind a re-tooled defense that is allowing an average of just 18.3 points a game after giving-up close to 29 points a game in 2013. They also have the league’s third-leading passer in quarterback Mike Reilly (738 yards) and second- leading receiver in total yards in slotback Adarius Bowman. He has posted 284 yards on 21 receptions.
Winnipeg has already reached last season’s three-win total SU and it has been a perfect bet this season ATS. The Blue Bombers continue to light-up the scoreboard with a CFL-high 115 points behind quarterback Drew Willy. He threw for 256 yards and one touchdown in last Friday’s win over the Alouettes while completing 24-of-38 attempts.
While Winnipeg was still a member of the East Division, it went 4-1 ATS against Edmonton in the last five meetings at home and the total has stayed UNDER in 11 of the last 16 meetings at Investors Group Field. The home team is 9-1 SU in the last 10 games between these two.
Friday, July 18
Toronto Argonauts (1-2 SU, 1-2 ATS) vs. Ottawa RedBlacks (0-2 SU, 0-2 ATS)
Point-Spread: Toronto -2 ½
Total: 52 ½
It has been a tale of two teams when it comes to the defending East Division Champs with a solid 33-point victory over Saskatchewan in Week 2 wrapped around losses to Winnipeg and Calgary by a combined 43 points. Argonauts’ quarterback Ricky Ray leads the CFL in passing yards with 982 while completing an impressive 75.7 percent of his throws, but he is having a hard time keep pace with a Toronto defense that is allowing an average of 31.3 points a game. The league’s newest franchise has looked like an expansion team in its first two games, but that was to be expected. Longtime CFL veteran quarterback Henry Burris struggled against the Eskimos last week with 134 yards passing and no scores while completing just 52 percent of his throws. The RedBlacks have averaged 19.5 points in their first two games.
With no head-to-head Betting Trends in this matchup, bettors may look at Toronto’s 13-4-1 record ATS in its last 18 road games as a key trend for Friday’s game. The total has gone OVER in five of the Argonauts last seven road games and it has gone OVER in seven of their last 10 games following a SU loss.
Hamilton Tiger-Cats (0-2 SU, 1-1 ATS) vs. Calgary Stampeders (2-0 SU, 2-0 ATS)
Point-Spread: Calgary – 9 ½
The Tiger-Cats enjoyed a much needed bye last week with the CFL’s new nine-team rotation after losing their first two games of the season SU. They did look much better in a tight four-point loss to Edmonton in Week 2 as opposed to 31-10 loss to Saskatchewan in their opener as 3 ½-point road underdogs. Quarterback Zach Collaros has been ruled out for this game with a lingering head injury.
Calgary could be the best balanced team in the CFL so far with an offense that has scored 63 points in two games complementing a defense that allowed a combined total of just 23 points to its opponents. Bo Levi Mitchell continues to look impressive as the Stampeders’ starting quarterback after lighting-up Toronto’s secondary for 267 yards passing and four touchdown throws in Week 3. Running back Jon Cornish remains questionable with a head injury as well.
The Stampeders have won the last four meetings SU, but the series is tied at 2-2 ATS. The home team in this inter-division matchup is 7-3 SU in the last 10 meetings and the total has stayed UNDER in three of the last four games.
Saturday, July 19
Montreal Alouettes (1-2 SU, 1-2 ATS) vs. British Columbia Lions (1-2 SU, 1-2 ATS)
Point-Spread: BC -5 ½
Total: 47 ½
Montreal is still looking for some better consistency on both sides of the ball after a 1-2 start that includes a lopsided loss to Calgary on opening day followed by a solid 15-point victory over BC in Week 2 as a three-point home underdog. The Alouettes racked-up 203 yards on the ground in that win against the Lions.
The Lions are another team searching for an early identity, but they have to be encouraged with last week’s victory. Kevin Glenn played his best game of the season with 170 yards passing and one touchdown throw while Andrew Harris had a big day on the ground with 138 yards rushing and a touchdown on 18 carries.
Montreal has failed to cover the spread in 22 of the last 29 meetings and it is a costly 3-13 ATS in the last 16 games played in BC. The total in this matchup has stayed UNDER in four of the last five games at BC Place.
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