Thursday, August 13, 2015

Week Eight Picks

Season record: 14-14
Last week: 3-1

Edmonton (4-2) at Montreal (2-4)

This is likely the toughest game of the week to predict. While I think Edmonton has the best defence in the league, I have some serious questions about their offence without Adarius Bowman in the lineup. The Alouettes, meanwhile, are a much better team than their 2-4 record would indicate. Noel Thorpe's defence is one of the best in the league, while Rakeem Cato and the offence will only get better having Tyrell Sutton back in the lineup. I can't see Matt Nichols putting up all that many points without Bowman on the field, instead turning it over and giving Montreal's offence enough cracks against Edmonton's defence to eventually break through. 

Pick: Montreal 

Toronto (4-2) at Winnipeg (3-4)

Robert Marve will be making his first career start when the Argonauts visit Investors Group Field. Marve has shown flashes of potential in limited game action, though as a rookie, he is expected to make some mistakes. While the Argonauts as a team haven't impressed me in recent weeks, their defence has been particularly bad. Having national safety Jermaine Gabriel back in the lineup would be huge for the Argos, but they're still without Cory Greenwood at weak-side linebacker. The Bombers lost Paris Cotton and Darvin Adams last week, but will have Bryant Turner Jr., Greg Peach and Nick Moore back in the lineup. Cameron Marshall, meanwhile, will get his first start at running back despite earning more carries than Cotton in recent weeks. If Marve can play more conservative than he did in the pre-season and protect the football, I think the Bombers can pull it off at home. But that's a lot to ask from a rookie pivot, so I'll take the Double Blue in a close game. 

Pick: Toronto 

BC (3-3) at Hamilton (4-2)

This game is a no-brainer. I simply don't think the Lions are good enough to be the first team to snap Hamilton's undefeated streak at Tim Hortons Field. Andrew Harris appears to be BC's only weapon on offence, however with the number one run-defence, the Tiger-Cats will limit his impact. Hamilton's offence did capitalize on good field-position and turnovers in the first half, but didn't really seem to be clicking in the second half against Winnipeg. Expect a big game from Zach Collaros against a lesser defence in the Lions'.

Pick: Hamilton 

Ottawa (4-2) at Calgary (4-2) 

How will Ottawa perform outside of TD Place? All four of the Redblacks' wins have come on their home stomping grounds, and the last time they traveled out West was to Edmonton, a game in which they  via blowout fashion. Ottawa's defence has been good, but not great, this season, which would also describe the play of Bo Levi Mitchell. A fierce Ottawa pass-rush and play-making group of defensive backs got the better of the second year starter when these teams met in week five. Calgary's receivers versus Ottawa's secondary should once again be the matchup to watch, and while I think they'll both take their shots, Calgary's pass-catchers will ultimately get their pay-back on Sunday. The play of Henry Burris will go a long way, but I like Calgary playing at home after a bye week. 

Pick: Calgary 

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