CFL

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CFL this week — Week 3

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Winnipeg Blue Bombers (2-0)

at Montreal Alouettes (1-1)

Tonight, 6 p.m. TV: TSN

Bombers line: The Bombers won only three games in 2013, but two of them came on the road in Montreal. This is a much better Winnipeg team than anything the Als saw in 2013 and, with a win in Montreal, would become just the third Bombers team since 1987 to open the regular season at 3-0.

Alouettes line: The first two weeks of the 2014 season have been a tale of two Montreal teams — the sad sacks who got thrashed 29-8 in Calgary on opening weekend and the dominating bunch that put on a stifling show of defence last week in a 24-9 win over B.C.

Bottom line: Will the real Montreal Alouettes please stand up?

 

Ottawa Redblacks (0-1)

at Edmonton Eskimos (2-0)

 Tonight, 9 p.m. TV: TSN

Redblacks line: Ottawa scored touchdowns on the first three possessions in franchise history last week in Winnipeg, but then rolled over in the second half and let one they should have won slip away, 36-28, to the Bombers.

Eskimos line: With two wins in 2014, the Eskimos already have half as many wins this season as they had in all of 2013. QB Mike Reilly is second in the league in completion percentage at 68.0, but his QB efficiency rating is just fifth at 92.2.

Bottom line: Ottawa QB Henry Burris is capable of winning some games all on his own — and he almost did last week.

 

Calgary Stampeders (1-0)

at Toronto Argonauts (1-1)

Saturday, 5:30 p.m. TV: TSN

Stampeders line: Calgary running back Jon Cornish continues to suffer concussion symptoms from an illegal hit in Week 1 and did not practice this week. Make no mistake, the Stampeders are still a good team — it’s just they’re much, much better when Cornish is in the lineup.

Argonauts line: The Argos followed up a dreadful outing in a Week 1 loss to Winnipeg with a very impressive win last week over the defending Grey Cup champion Saskatchewan Roughriders. But they will be without a couple of key players this week, with both Andre Durie and Shea Emry sitting out with injuries.

Bottom line: Figure out who has the costlier injuries and you figure out who wins the game.

 

 

B.C. Lions (0-2)

at Saskatchewan Roughriders (1-1)

Saturday, 8:30 p.m. TV: TSN

Lions line: Credit Lions head coach Mike Benevides for saying out loud this week what everyone has been thinking about his team — "We suck." The Lions problems are myriad but they begin at QB, where Kevin Glenn — playing in place of injured starter Travis Lulay — has thrown 6 INTs against just 2 TDs and is dead last in QB efficiency at 48.5.

Riders line: The Riders wasted no time in shaking things up after a 48-15 shellacking in Toronto last week, trading troublemaking DB Dwight Anderson to the Argos. That solved one problem but here’s another: QB Darian Durant has a 4:3 TD to INT ratio and is 6th in QB efficiency at 91.2.

Bottom line: Lions without Lulay are in big trouble.

 

The picks

The Free Press has assembled a panel to offer its predictions every week in 2014. Joining us once again this year are CJOB’s Bob Irving, and from the Free Press, sports editor Steve Lyons, columnists Gary Lawless and Doug Brown and football writers Paul Wiecek and Ed Tait:

Irving: Wpg, Edmonton, Calgary, BC

Lyons: Montreal, Edmonton, Toronto, Saskatchewan

Lawless: Montreal, Edmonton, Toronto, Saskatchewan

Brown: Wpg, Edmonton, Toronto, Saskatchewan

Tait: Wpg, Edmonton, Toronto, Saskatchewan

Wiecek: Wpg, Edmonton, Toronto, Saskatchewan

 

Last week/Overall

Lyons — 4-0/7-1; Irving — 3-1/6-2; Lawless — 2-2/4-4; Brown — 2-2/4-4; Tait — 2-2/4-4; Wiecek — 2-2/4-4

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