TIGER-CATS (4-7) at BLUE BOMBERS (2-9)
Tonight, 7 p.m. TV: TSN Radio: CJOB
Bombers line: They're bad and appear to be getting worse. The return of QB Buck Pierce should help -- but this team's problems only start at quarterback, they don't end there. The only safe prediction about this club these days is that there won't be any laughing on the bench if they're getting drilled again this week.
Ticats line: The Ticats were 3-2 when they came to town in August and their narrow loss here, which also represents Winnipeg's last win, began a five-game Hamilton losing skid that ended with a 51-8 win over the Edmonton Eskimos last weekend.
Bottom line: If you don't think the Bombers can win this game, then you probably don't think they're going to win another game all season. And you might not be wrong.
LIONS (8-3) at ESKIMOS (5-6)
Saturday, 6:30 p.m. TV: TSN
Lions line: B.C. has the best record in the country this season, mostly because they're 5-1 at home. This one's on the road.
Eskimos line: Edmonton has lost three in a row, their offence is almost as bad as Winnipeg's and this week they announced they were bringing in an "adviser" to help offensive co-ordinator Marcus Crandell. Yikes.
Bottom line: A battle between the best defence in the league and the second-worst offence.
ARGONAUTS (6-5) at ALOUETTES (7-4)
Sunday, noon TV: TSN
Argos line: The Argos have a winning record but have actually given up more points this season -- 280 -- than they've scored -- 278. They've proven remarkably efficient at making the points they have scored count and their defence has exceeded just about everyone's expectations this season.
Alouettes line: The Als have also given up more points than they've scored -- 327-301. But they've been dominant at home, where they boast a 5-1 record.
Bottom line: A win and the first-place Als would have a four-point cushion on second-place Toronto with six games to play.
STAMPEDERS (7-4) at ROUGHRIDERS (5-6)
Sunday, 3 p.m. TV: TSN
Stampeders line: The Stamps are riding a four-game winning streak, thanks in large part to what is shaping up to be a record-breaking season for running back Jon Cornish. Cornish needs to average just 79 yards per game the rest of the season to eclipse the 56-year-old single-season rushing yards record for a Canadian set by Normie Kwong (1,437 yards).
Roughriders line: Head coach Corey Chamblin said someone is going to lose their job if his club doesn't hold Cornish to under 100 yards rushing this week. Someone is going to lose their job.
Bottom line: Chamblin provided an amusing diversion with his Cornish pledge this week. But it won't be so funny if someone actually loses their job because the coach is writing cheques his defence can't cash.
THE PICKS (straight up)
The Free Press has assembled a panel this season to offer their fearless predictions every week. Joining us this year are CJOB's Bob Irving, and from the Free Press, sports editor Steve Lyons, columnists Gary Lawless and Doug Brown and lead football writer Paul Wiecek:
Irving: Winnipeg, B.C., Toronto, Calgary
Lyons: Winnipeg, B.C., Montreal, Saskatchewan
Lawless: Hamilton, B.C., Montreal, Calgary
Brown: Hamilton, B.C., Montreal, Calgary
Wiecek: Hamilton, B.C., Montreal, Calgary
Last week (overall): Irving 4-0 (30-14); Lyons 4-0 (27-17); Brown 4-0 (25-19); Lawless 3-1 (23-21); Wiecek 4-0 (20-24).