Ottawa by 11
B.C. by 7
Calgary by 14
Hamilton by 21
posted by DrJohnEvans at 10:11 AM on September 23
Montreal puts up a good fight but can't seal the deal as Hamilton wins a close one. Not so close out in Winnipeg as the Bombers pound the Argos, nor in Calgary as Ottawa gets stamped out. But some good drama out in Regina, as Saskatchewan completes the big fourth-quarter comeback, and then in OT, the unthinkable: the Roughriders WIN.
rcade keeps pace at the top, but the big story is at the bottom. argoal nails the Saskatchewan win to jump out of last place, putting the Costanza up for grabs again.
What's that yeasty smell wafting around the corner? That's right, you're smelling playoffs. They're closer, and more fragrant, than you think.
Toronto @ Ottawa (Friday, September 23)
This could be a pivotal game for playoff positioning. Ottawa was riding high but has stumbled as of late. Toronto can't quite seem to get it together, but are still in the mix. An Argo win could re-ignite hopes for a home playoff date at BMO.
B.C. @ Edmonton (Friday, September 23)
B.C. has won three in a row and looks primed to host the division semi. But Edmonton has desperation on their side: another loss and they may just be out of it entirely.
Winnipeg @ Calgary (Saturday, September 24)
Some midseason trades have put Winnipeg in a much better position to play in the West. They looked great against the Argos last week. But here's some top-secret insider info: the Stampeders are probably better than the Argos.
Hamilton @ Saskatchewan (Sunday, September 24)
Hamilton, with a 6-6 record, is enjoying life at the top of a terrible division. Chances are they'll plump up their record with a win this week. But fall is coming out west, and who knows what will happen when the Regina winds start to howl?
posted by DrJohnEvans at 01:48 PM on September 22
Hamilton by 14
Winnipeg by 10
Calgary by 7
Edmonton by 11
posted by DrJohnEvans at 10:45 PM on September 15
Willy and Glenn will both be holding clipboards in this one
Glenn's team is 56-12 all-time against Willy's team when neither plays.
(Also I'm giving LeFevour until the second quarter to get yanked.)
posted by DrJohnEvans at 10:43 PM on September 15
Montreal puts up a fight, but B.C. prevails at home. Saskatchewan loses another close one, this time in Winnipeg. Calgary holds off the Esks, while Toronto overcomes adversity (and another injury to Ricky Ray) to notch a big win over the Ti-Cats.
Another week, another 8-point edge for rcade. All y'all in the second-place bunch are running out of time.
It's another week, right after the last one!
Montreal @ Hamilton (Friday, September 16)
The rebuild is underway in Montreal, with the Alouettes shipping out Kevin Glenn to the Blue Bombers. Meanwhile, Hamilton is smarting from a tough loss last week and will be looking to get back into the race for first.
Toronto @ Winnipeg (Saturday, September 17)
Speaking of Kevin Glenn! Drew Willy will face his former team right off the bat, which will make for some interesting television narratives, I'm sure. But the real story is that the Argos are 0-436 against Kevin Glenn. Or at least that's what it feels like.
Ottawa @ Calgary (Saturday, September 17)
Technically, this is a match-up of first place teams. Calgary is 9-1-1 and +120. Ottawa is 5-4-1 and +7. So, there's that.
Edmonton @ Saskatchewan (Sunday, September 18)
Edmonton's in tough, but a win in Saskatchewan and we can start talking crossover. Meanwhile, will the Riders fall short of their 3-15 record from last year?
posted by DrJohnEvans at 11:42 AM on September 15
Hold the phone! Ricky Ray may have a punctured lung? Dang, son.
Hat tip to argoal for the notice.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 10:26 PM on September 08
B.C. by 11
Winnipeg by 21
Calgary by 6
Hamilton by 21
posted by DrJohnEvans at 04:28 PM on September 08
B.C. guts out a close win over the Argosand so does Ottawa in Montreal, and Winnipeg in Saskatchewan. Less close is Calgary running roughshod over the Esks, and just plain heartbreaking is the Argos blowing a 20-point lead in Hamilton.
At some point when I was on vacation, rcade jumped out to a huge lead. Can he be caught?
Back to a regular slate of four games this week, and no silly Wednesday/Monday shenanigans.
Montreal @ B.C. (Friday, September 9)
I've been away for a while. Is Montreal still bad? *checks* Yes. Yes, they are. But Kevin Glenn is making them seem a lot better than they are.
Saskatchewan @ Winnipeg (Saturday, September 10)
Saskatchewan has at least been making things close over the past couple of weeks. Are they due for a big second win? Probably not, but could be a sexy pick if you're trying to make a big move.
Calgary @ Edmonton (Saturday, September 10)
Okay, so Calgary hasn't lost since Week 1. So now we're playing "Beat the streak". And probably Edmonton too.
Hamilton @ Toronto (Sunday, September 11)
Meanwhile, Toronto is in free fall. Their last win was in Week 6. Ricky Ray is back, which may be a glimmer of hope? But Father Time catches us all eventually. (Except Kevin Glenn.)
posted by DrJohnEvans at 10:40 AM on September 08
Better late than never - here are the standings heading into Week 11! Thanks to Reever for standing in.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 03:32 PM on September 07
Winnipeg by 12
Calgary by 7
Hamilton by 10
posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:09 PM on September 01
Ottawa by 10
Winnipeg by 14
Edmonton by 21
Hamilton by 14
posted by DrJohnEvans at 01:29 PM on August 22
Blowouts across the board! Montreal stuns Ottawa, Calgary tramples B.C., Edmonton knocks around the Argos, and Hamilton just plain embarrasses Saskatchewan.
Tough week for spreads! If you got three points, slap yourself on the back.
"Who's going to be brave enough to pick Saskatchewan this week? Or any week, for that matter?"
... is what I wrote in Week 10 of the 2015 season, and it still applies.
B.C. @ Ottawa (Thursday, August 25)
Two would-be contenders coming off tough losses. Someone's gotta bounce back, and Trevor Harris is getting the start for the Redblacks.
Winnipeg @ Montreal (Friday, August 26)
Kevin Glenn's career renaissance continues as he faces off against his former team. Okay, to be fair, EVERY team is Kevin Glenn's former team.
Saskatchewan @ Edmonton (Friday, August 26)
Hamilton @ Calgary (Sunday, August 28)
Hamilton is one good week away from grabbing the division lead. All they have to do is beat the league's leading offence. And defence. In Calgary. Yeah.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 11:03 PM on August 21
Ottawa by 10
B.C. by 7
Edmonton by 17
Hamilton by 20
posted by DrJohnEvans at 01:29 PM on August 18
Montreal keeps it interesting, but Edmonton outlasts the Alouettes for the win. Toronto's done in by turnovers as Winnipeg cruises to the win. Saskatchewan makes a game of it, but penalty troubles give the game away to the Stamps, while B.C. comes out on top in a good ol' fashioned barnburner.
rcade keeps the momentum going with another five-point week, despite Ottawa not playing.
We might see some shifting in the West divison standing this week. But not the East. The East standings will remain the same forever.
Montreal @ Ottawa (Friday, August 19)
It's back to the Henry Burris Career Watch, as he's slated for the start on Friday. Montreal isn't exactly contending, but their defence has challenged even the best QBs this season.
Calgary @ B.C. (Friday, August 19)
Is B.C. for real? This is the week they can answer that question. A win puts them into first place in the West, for the first time in who knows how many years.
Edmonton @ Toronto (Saturday, August 20)
Either of two teams that could put together a nice run, if only they could get out of their own ways. But hey, someone's gotta win this week, and I would probably give the slight edge to the team with an actual starting QB.
Saskatchewan @ Hamilton (Saturday, August 20)
Hot stat: the Roughriders have lost their last 3 games by a combined score of 95-28. Who wants to bet against the streak?
posted by DrJohnEvans at 10:41 PM on August 17
Edmonton by 8 - a two-score pick!
Winnipeg by 10
Calgary by 21
Hamilton by 7
posted by DrJohnEvans at 04:54 PM on August 09
After a big ol' rain delay, Winnipeg rushes out to a 34-0 lead and doesn't look back. Montreal hangs in there for a few quarters, but B.C.'s 15-point fourth seals the deal. Much the same story in Calgary, as the Stamps outscore the Riders 16-0 in the fourth to put it away. Things in Ottawa are a little more nerve-wracking as the Redblacks narrowly edge the Esks.
Here's a trend: An Ottawa win puts rcade on top. Coincidence?
[insert witty description of week here]
Montreal @ Edmonton (Thursday, August 11)
What a weird season for Edmonton - every game has been close, but they're still 2-4 and in a distant fourth place. Montreal hasn't exactly been setting the world on fire, but their defence is solid, and I'm not sure a low-scoring game plays in Edmonton's favour.
Winnipeg @ Toronto (Friday, August 12)
Winnipeg has been anything but consistent so far, and it's tough to make them a favourite. But I'm also not putting any money on Logan Kilgore—yet.
Calgary @ Saskatchewan (Saturday, August 13)
With a (relatively) healthy Darian Durant back at QB, Saskatchewan did not expect to be the division doormat for a second straight year. But they're 1-5 and hosting the division leaders. Wipe your feet before entering, I guess.
Hamilton @ B.C. (Saturday, August 13)
Rumour has it that Zach Collaros will make his much-anticipated return this week, which is good for the Ti-Cats, because Jeremiah Masoli ain't winning in Vancouver.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 05:23 PM on August 08
Alright! Week 7 standings are below. And due to the rain delay in Winnipeg, I got 'em in just in time!
The corrected Week 6 standings are available here.
I've double-checked all previous weeks and everything else is good. So some cut-and-paste wonkiness just happened last week, I guess. Thanks very much for bearing with me.
The new names start to connect in Winnipeg, as the Bombers dispatch the Eskimoes. In a bilingual shocker, Saskatchewan gets completely roughed up in Montreal. Calgary rides a huge 22-point fourth quarter to overtime, and edges the Lions in OT, while Toronto remains undefeated on the road.
Points are tough to come by this week, and not just because I can't do math. But bender and rcade both scrape out 3-point weeks to stay in contention.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:40 PM on August 03
posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:17 PM on August 03
Hamilton by 10
B.C. by 13
Calgary by 21
Ottawa by 6
posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:54 AM on August 03
Our intrepid Pick 'Em accounting department is still double-checking the corrections to the standings, which means they're not quite ready for publication yet. But soon! In the meantime, here are this week's games, so y'all can submit your picks in a manner more timely than yours truly.
Hamilton @ Winnipeg (Wednesday, August 3)
Another Wednesday game? Who are they trying to fool here? Maybe Winnipeg is trying to fool Hamilton into not showing up on time and losing by forfeit. That might be their best chance at winning.
B.C. @ Montreal (Thursday, August 4)
Good news: Montreal won another game! Bad news: it was against Saskatchewan. Montreal is still bad, and despite their (surprising) league-leading defence, I suspect they'll have their hands full with the Lions in town.
Saskatchewan @ Calgary (Thursday, August 4)
Speaking of bad teams, Saskatchewan is one, and Calgary is not.
Edmonton @ Ottawa (Saturday, August 6)
I'm not quite sure what to make of Edmonton. On one hand, they've played exactly to their Pythagorean record. On the other, they've been in every game they've played - they haven't won or lost by more than a touchdown. A bad team staying in it? Or a good team waiting to break out? Henry Burris will find out for us.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 03:31 PM on August 02
Update: so I did accidentally delete Week 3 (or accidentally swap Week 3 and 4? I can't tell) but in my spreadsheet the standings and points after Week 6 are correct. Where I got the total figures above, I have no idea.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:33 PM on August 01
Saskatchewan by 8
Calgary by 7
Ottawa by 10
posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:42 AM on July 29
Ohhhh it's even worse than I thought. Instead of copying my Week 3 spreadsheet, I overwrote it with Week 4. No wonder nothing adds up.
I'll have to recreate it. May take a couple of days but I'll get the standings corrected in time for next week.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 11:58 AM on July 28
Hmm, this is a bigger issue than I thought. It looks like I copied over the "last week points" column incorrectly - 2 weeks ago. Fixing.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 11:47 AM on July 28
Whoa, yeah, it looks like I mixed up some usernames on last week's standings. Somehow I switched around ic23b, bender, and Howard_T.
This week's standings are correct. But I'll fix last week's and post an update in that thread.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 10:22 AM on July 28
Bo Levi Mitchell looked like his old self as the Stamps cruised to victory over the Bombers. Mitchell Gale looks promising as the 'Riders just barely squeak by the Redblacks. A huge comeback in Edmonton: down 31-6 in the third quarter, Hamilton scores 31 unanswered points to shock the Eskimo faithful. Here in Toronto, a swirling 5 km/h wind gave the kickers fits (0/5 combined) as Toronto overcomes some early nerves to get the job done.
How 'bout this: TWO seven point weeks. ic23b jumps into first place, while tahoemoj jumps right into contention.
It's Simcoe Day and a long weekend, but apparently somebody told the CFL that the holiday Monday was last week. Ol' J.G. must be spinning in his chapel.
Winnipeg @ Edmonton (Thursday, July 28)
Winnipeg came into the season as a sexy pick to come out of the west, but have not lived up to their billing. They're going to have to win a couple of games to get out of DrJohnEvans' Underdog Doghouse (DUD). Okay, maybe the acronym is a bit harsh.
Saskatchewan @ Montreal (Friday, July 29)
Battle of the basements! Saskatchewan has been bad. Montreal has been awful: they're averaging fewer than 15 points a game. That's not going to get it done in the CFL.
B.C. @ Calgary (Friday, July 29)
An early tilt for the division lead. Both team's QBs have been rounding into form: Bo-Levi Mitchell is throwing well for the Stampeders, and apparently the Lions' quarterback is named "Jonathan Jennings", which is obviously a witness-protection pseudonym.
Toronto @ Ottawa (Sunday, July 31)
Speaking of quarterbacks, are you excited for the heavyweight matchup of Brock Jensen vs Logan Kilgore? Hooooo boy.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 01:07 PM on July 27
Winnipeg will never win again.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 10:42 AM on July 22
Winnipeg by 8
Ottawa by 3
Hamilton by 10
Montreal by 10
posted by DrJohnEvans at 05:59 PM on July 21
Last week was all about comebacks. Toronto jumps out to a big lead, but fades away quickly at the Redblacks complete the comeback. Edmonton is shut out in the first quarter, but elbows their way back into it to edge the Bombers. Hamilton is also held pointless for the first fifteen, but then scores a whole bunch, while B.C. weathers a tough first half and comes back in style.
rcade and Howard_T both miss the Thursday games, but then nail the B.C. win to hang on. ic23b was threatening, too - one fewer Lions rouge and you're laughing all the way to the bank1.
1. The Bank of First Place in Week 5 of a No-Money CFL Pick 'Em
The dart-throwing schedule monkey has granted Toronto a full eleven days between games. I hope they're not playing on Tuesday in Week 6.
Calgary @ Winnipeg (Thursday, July 21)
Calgary's in a holding pattern, relying on their defence while waiting for their offence to kick in. But Winnipeg? They just haven't been getting it done. Dropping to 1-4 could mean a whole new set of changes for them.
Ottawa @ Saskatchewan (Friday, July 22)
Saskatchewan isn't as bad as they were last year. But so far, they're still pretty bad.
Hamilton @ Edmonton (Saturday, July 23)
Here's a nice one. Two teams playing slightly under expectations, looking to grab a share of first with a win. Bonus for Hamilton: a first win outside the division would go a long way to establishing their credentials.
Montreal @ Toronto (Monday, July 25)
Montreal is bad. Even Toronto should be able to beat them. So, expect a nailbiter.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:47 PM on July 19
Ottawa by 12
Winnipeg by 3
Hamilton by 14
Saskatchewan by 7
posted by DrJohnEvans at 11:58 AM on July 12
Winnipeg rides a big first half to the win as the Ti-Cats continue to struggle at home. Toronto rides their defence to a gritty win out in Vancouver. Edmonton needs overtime to do it, but they pile on the points to edge the Riders. Out in Ottawa, overtime settles absolutely nothing, as the Stamps and Redblacks wrestle their way to the all-too-rare tie.
With a tie, two underdog wins, and everybody getting points for EDM/SSK, this was a weird week. A strong four points for Reever, while rcade takes advantage of the confusion to slip into first place.
"We'll get a new stadium," said the Argos, "and then we'll be forever free of weird scheduling constraints."
Ottawa @ Toronto (Wednesday, July 13)
The return of Trevor Harris! Formerly Toronto's much-vaunted super-backup, he escaped to Ottawa to become their... much-vaunted super-backup. But with Henry Burris on the shelf, Argos fans will get a chance to see Harris's zany yet effective playmaking once more.
Edmonton @ Winnipeg (Thursday, July 14)
I don't know what to think about this game. Both of these teams are probably better than they've been playing? Winnipeg home edge I guess? Yeah, let's go with that.
Hamilton @ Montreal (Friday, July 15)
That loud, wet smack you heard was Hamilton hitting the basement floor. They should probably beat Montreal, but there's a lot of "shoulds" in their rear-view mirror.
B.C. @ Saskatchewan (Saturday, July 16)
Speaking of early-season stumbles, Saskatchewan's in last place and keeps getting late-night texts from 2015. If they want to move on they'd better start winning — but first-place B.C., with their division-leading defence, is a tough place to start.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 10:20 PM on July 11
A tie indeed! But don't worry, the Pick 'Em witnessed the last one.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:33 PM on July 11
Hamilton by 6
B.C. by 8
Ottawa by 14
Edmonton by 10
posted by DrJohnEvans at 01:14 PM on July 06
Things got a little weird in Montreal, but Trevor Harris puts together a solid game for the Ottawa win. Toronto finally finds their offence out in Saskatchewan. Hamilton completely loses the handle at home in a blowout loss to the Lions, while Winnipeg's new look comes up short again, this time in Calgary.
Movement at the top already! rcade nails the Argos win, and bender's lucky coin does the job, as they tie for the lead.
Continuing a grand CFL tradition, the third week of the season is the one that follows the second.
Winnipeg @ Hamilton (Thursday, July 7)
Both these teams added significant pieces in the offseason but have yet to gain traction with them. Hamilton's coming off an embarrassing performance at home, but the real pressure's on winless Winnipeg.
Toronto @ B.C. (Thursday, July 7)
B.C.'s strong start has them at the top of the West, while Toronto's still putting the pieces together - and Vancouver is always a tough place to play. But the Lions haven't scored nearly as many points as they would've liked, and the Argos have proven to be road warriors in the past.
Calgary @ Ottawa (Friday, July 8)
So far Ottawa's strategy has been "Give up a million points, but score a billion points", and so far it's working. How far can Trevor Harris throw the ball on a gummy Ottawa summer evening?
Saskatchewan @ Edmonton (Friday, July 8)
Early bye weeks have both these teams looking for their first win. Who's got the edge? If I knew, I wouldn't be running this little pick 'em, I can tell you that much.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:16 PM on July 05
Ottawa by 10
Saskatchewan by 8
Hamilton by 6
Calgary by 3
posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:55 PM on June 28
Toronto opens the season in their new digs, but Hamilton plays the unwelcome guest with a blowout win. Winnipeg fêtes their new faces, but it's Montreal who brings the party and the win. The Grey Cup rematch is an old-fashioned barnburner, and it's Trevor Harris who seals the deal, while B.C. gets off on the right foot with a tight win over the Stamps.
Not many points handed out with three road wins, but rcade's new favourite team pays him some dividends with a spread nailed.
It's the Canada Day long weekend, so make sure to get your picks in long before you fire up your barbeques.
Ottawa @ Montreal (Thursday, June 30)
The Redblacks, fresh off a 45-point game, take a drive down the 417. But Montreal's just flexed their defensive muscles, so something's gotta give.
Toronto @ Saskatchewan (Thursday, June 30)
Toronto looked pretty rough for long stretches in last week's game. But Saskatchewan looked pretty rough for all of 2015. Damien Durant is back after missing most of the last two seasons, and you can be sure all eyes will be on his reconstructed tendons and ligaments.
B.C. @ Hamilton (Friday, July 1)
The Lions are looking to redeem themselves after a lacklustre 2015 season, and put up a good show last week. But Hamilton will be a true test: they're one of the better all-around teams in the league
Winnipeg @ Calgary (Friday, July 1)
Two teams, both with high hopes after being reworked in the offseason, both coming off tough first-week losses. Something's gotta give. Unless they tie. Anyone gonna pick the tie?
posted by DrJohnEvans at 08:59 PM on June 27
Toronto by 4
Winnipeg by 18
Edmonton by 10
Calgary by 9
posted by DrJohnEvans at 02:02 PM on June 23
Lets get it on for the new CFL braggin' rights.
And a game ball! See above.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 02:01 PM on June 23
Yes! There is a prize this year, courtesy of rcade and Sportsfilter!
2016 CFL Pick 'Em Prize: OFFICIAL CFL GAME BALL
Wilson has been the official game ball of the CFL since 1995. Hand crafted in Ada, Ohio the CFL game ball has an exclusive Wilson CFL pattern for top performance and double laces for added texture and control. Every CFL game ball is personally inspected by DrJohnEvans and must pass the same specifications as those used on the field.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 11:02 AM on June 21
THE PICK 'EM - What we do
Maybe you're a Canadian hockey fan. Or maybe you're a Pacers fan. Or maybe you live somewhere like Drufus, Newfoundland, and your rabbit ears pick up only Icelandic public-access television. Whatever the reason, you haven't seen a meaningful sports game in ages, which means that the CFL's 2016 season is ripe for your picking. Literally. We pick games. We pick each and every single professional Canadian football game that will be played, in Canada, on 110-yard-long fields, with 25-yard end zones*, from now until the end of time. So why not join us?
* Some restrictions apply. THANKS TFC.
THE SEASON - When we do it
The season kicks off this Thursday night and runs for 20 weeks through the summer. There are generally four games per week, mostly running from Thursday to Sunday.
If you're in Canada, you'll find the games on TSN. If you're in the States, the CFL has a long-term deal with some random network called ESPN. And if you're somewhere else, you'll have to resort to SiriusXM on the satellite radio dial (which is a two-way switch with one of the options crossed out).
THE RULES - How we do it
Here's how she works. You pick who you think will win, and by how much. You then get points based on the result:
What's the Margin of Error?
It's a window around the spread that's defined as
spread - round(0.3 * spread) <= Margin of Error <= spread + round(0.3 * spread)
spread - round(0.3 * spread) <= Margin of Error <= spread + round(0.3 * spread)
So you can get rewarded for being close to the spread even if you're not spot-on. The bigger the spread, the bigger the margin of error, so you don't have to be as accurate when predicting a blowout as you would when predicting a close game. Here are some examples:
So if you picked Toronto by 15, here's how you'd fare given certain outcomes:
THE GAMES, WEEK ONE - Where we start
In lieu of attempting to sum up each team's status in a single sentence, for this opening week I'm just linking to season preview pages for each of 'em.
All times are EDT.
Hamilton Tiger-Cats (Preview) @ Toronto Argonauts (Preview) - Thursday, June 23, 7:30pm
Montreal Alouettes (Preview) @ Winnipeg Blue Bombers (Preview) - Friday, June 24, 8:30pm
Ottawa Redblacks (Preview) @ Edmonton Eskimos (Preview) - Saturday, June 25, 7:00pm
Calgary Stampeders (Preview) @ B.C. Lions (Preview) - Saturday, June 25, 10:00pm
posted by DrJohnEvans at 08:59 PM on June 20
Ottawa jumps out to a big lead in the first quarter, but Edmonton scratches and claws their way back over the next two. Both offences seemed primed to pop, but plummeted nearly as quickly as the mercury. In the end, Edmonton puts together a big fourth-quarter drive, including two pass interference calls (upheld on command centre review!), and punches the ball in to become your Grey Cup champions.
Everybody gets two points! Which means argoal takes the cake. Congratulations!
As for those of us who didn't get two points, cixelsyd made picks in every week and came away with only three points total. A well-deserved Costanza. Congratulations!
Thanks again to everyone for playing. See y'all in June!
posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:24 PM on December 04
Ottawa by 3
Ellingson (subject to change)
posted by DrJohnEvans at 03:19 PM on November 27
Some barns got burned this weekend! With perfect weather at both ends of the country, the QBs took advantage and piled up the points. Hamilton plays catch-up to Ottawa the entire game, managing to tie in with under 90 seconds left in the fourth quarter. But a miracle Burris toss on 2nd and 25 leads to a 93-yard touchdown and the game.
Out West, Mike Reilly straight outguns Bo-Levi Mitchell, as Edmonton pumps in five touchdowns to book their ticket to Winnipeg.
Points are scarce as both bonuses go to the losing teams, but that's why you hedge your bets. argoal adds another point to his lead and is going to be tough to beat.
Here's one reason (the only reason?) to go to Winnipeg in November:
THE 103rd GREY CUP
Ottawa Redblacks (12-6) @ Edmonton Eskimos (14-4) (Sunday, November 30)
This is the matchup that nobody saw coming. Edmonton was a favourite until the fourth quarter of Week One, when QB Mike Reilly blew out his knee. The backups put together a decent enough 6-3 record in his absence, but the division looked lost to Calgary — until Reilly's return. Nine straight wins later, here they are, facing the upstart Redblacks with a wily veteran in Henry Burris. He may be forty years old, but he's proven that he can still find the end zone. Sunday's forecast is a pleasant -3 degrees Celsius with no hint of snow, so let's sit back and enjoy what should be a good ol' fashioned shootout.
Of course, now that I've written that, the final score is sure to be 16-9.
CFL.ca Grey Cup Preview »
Pick the MVP of the Grey Cup.
The points-scored O/U for the Grey Cup is currently set at 50.5. Will the total points scored be over or under that total?
Pick the total yardage thrown by all quarterbacks in the Grey Cup. This is worth no points and will be used only in case of a tie.
Example pick: Ottawa by 21, Ellingson, Over, 500.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 04:28 PM on November 26
Ottawa by 14
Calgary by 7
posted by DrJohnEvans at 07:20 PM on November 19
The Argos and Ti-Cats play a tight game to the end, but a fatal Argo trip and the big boot of Justin Medlock sends the Ti-Cats to the Eastern final. Out west, Calgary clamps down hard on the Lions, holding them to three field goals while notching a handy 35 points.
A windy day in the Hammer means Medlock takes the kicking crown, and despite Calgary's best efforts to score 100 all on their own, we come in under the O/U.
argoal finally gets his breakthrough, although he needs a score reset to do it! A healthy four points puts him in sole possession of first place.
Cold enough for ya? Just wait 'til we get to the:
Hamilton Tiger-Cats (10-8) @ Ottawa Redblacks (12-6) (Sunday, November 22, 1:00pm ET)
Just like they drew it up: the Redblacks host the Eastern Final in just their second year of existence, and are the favourites to win. Henry Burris leads the league in passing yards by over a kilometer, and Ottawa easily handled the Ti-Cats in the last two weeks of the regular season. But no guarantees: last week Hamilton showed that it can make points happen with its team of backup QBs, and they still have the best defence in the division.
CFL.ca Eastern Final Preview
Calgary Stampeders (14-4) @ Edmonton Eskimos (14-4) (Sunday, November 22, 4:30pm ET)
Calgary's got revenge on their minds: they sat atop the West Division for most of the season, at least until Edmonton got QB Mike Reilly back and rattled off eight wins to finish the season. But for timing, these two teams have been pretty evenly matched. The snow should hold off, so look for some big throws on what should be a clear, sunny, bitterly cold Edmonton day.
CFL.ca Western Final Preview
Offence Wins Championships Bonus
Pick the quarterback who will throw for the highest yardage on Sunday.
2015 Passing Stats
Defence Wins Championships Bonus
Pick the team whose defence will register the most sacks on Sunday.
2015 Sacks Status
Example pick: Hamilton by 21, Calgary by 14, Masoli, Edmonton.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 02:26 PM on November 19
Toronto Argonauts (10-8) @ Hamilton Tiger-Cats (10-8) (Sunday, November 15, 1:00pm ET)
Somehow it always seems to come down to these two teams (although in a nine-team league, maybe not so much of a surprise). The Ti-Cats are 3-0 against the Argos this year. BUT: each of those games came earlier in the year, with Zach Collaros at QB for Hamilton and Ricky Ray on the sidelines for Toronto. Now Collaros is out for the season, and Ricky Ray is back and looking just about like the Hall of Famer that he is. How much is a quarterback worth?
CFL.ca Eastern Semi-Final Preview
B.C. Lions (7-11) @ Calgary Stampeders (14-4) (Sunday, November 15, 4:30pm ET)
On paper, this is a mismatch. Calgary was just edged out for the division title, and was easily the second-best team in the league this season. B.C. was lucky to fend off a crossover challenge and just barely snuck into the playoffs. But anything can happen in one-game elimination. And even better: half a foot of snow is scheduld to drop on Calgary this Sunday.
CFL.ca Western Semi-Final Preview
Yes, I'm re-using last year's bonus names. But intentionally! Just look at that fish!
Swayze Waters River Salmon Bonus
Pick the kicker who will score the most points this weekend. That includes place-kick field goals, drop-kick field goals, PATs, singles, and fake field goals thrown for touchdowns.
2015 Kicking Stats
Las Vegas Posse Memorial Bonus
The combined over/under on total points scored for both games is 100.5. Will the actual number of points scored this weekend be OVER or UNDER that total?
Example pick: Hamilton by 21, B.C. by 14, Leone, Over.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 10:03 PM on November 11
tahoemoj, nine years and I never noticed the second "o" until now! Honest mistake.
And congratulations! I'll look for your 20-point week next year when your sleep-deprived brain turns you into a CFL prognostication genius.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 10:32 AM on November 10
Toronto grabs the win over Winnipeg in the final Argos game at the SkyDome. Ottawa hangs forty-four points on the Ti-Cats to take the East in style. Calgary rides a strong second half to beat the Lions in Vancouver, and Saskatchewan finishes strong by beating the Alouettes in Montreal.
argoal's 76 points would have been enough to win the CFL Pick 'Em in any other year, but not this year. jagsnumberone's 83 points shatter all available records (2004 and 2005 are still a bit fuzzy) and he walks away a most deserving champion. He moved into first place in Week 2, took sole posession in Week 4, and never looked back. Congrats, jags!
At the other end, owlhouse comes within a Ricky Foley hair of losing his grip on last place, but manages an 0-fer in the last two games to hang on to the Costanza. Well done owlhouse!
Thanks to everyone for playing along! Keep an eye out for the CFL Playoff Pick 'Em, coming soon to a SpoFi post near you!
posted by DrJohnEvans at 10:03 PM on November 09
Toronto by 4
Ottawa by 17
B.C. by 12
Saskatchewan by 7
posted by DrJohnEvans at 12:39 PM on November 06
Not that it makes a big difference, but I had another point (I had the margin as 3 for the Toronto-BC game).
If you picked the losing team, you only get the single point if you picked the spread exactly - margins don't count in that case.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:32 AM on November 05
B.C. holds off the Argo comeback to grab a playoff spot despite a messy 7-10 record. Calgary rides roughshod over the Riders, but it's too little too late as they must settle for second in the division. Hamilton looks lost without Zach Collaros, as Ottawa needs only twelve points for the win. And Montreal can't quite get it done in Edmonton, losing out on a playoff spot for the first time in franchise history.
jags has all but clinched, barring a miracle ten-point week from the second-placers, who have their own race to worry about. JPR has snuck up and tied argoal again. Who will prevail?
The last week's games in a football season tend to be either Incredibly Meaningful or Completely Meaningless. This week we've got a bit of both.
Winnipeg @ Toronto (Friday, November 6)
Winnipeg's out and Toronto is in. But Toronto's been on a tough slide lately and will certainly want to pick up momentum before hitting the postseason road.
Hamilton @ Ottawa (Saturday, November 7)
This game has All The Meaning: the East Division title, and its accompanying first-round bye, are at stake. If my math is right, Hamilton needs to win by at least six points. But having lost two straight and having scored a mere 19 points in those losses - it won't be easy.
Calgary @ B.C. (Saturday, November 7)
Both of these teams have their playoff matchup set: against each other. That's right, next week B.C. travels to Calgary in the West semi-final. So what plays do you run when you're facing your playoff opponent? Probably not very good ones.
Saskatchewan @ Montreal (Sunday, November 8)
And we round the season out with a battle of the basements. If you've been holding off all year on picking Saskatchewan to win, maybe now's your chance.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:52 PM on November 03
Thanks to Ken Tremendous for the quote.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 02:19 PM on October 30
B.C. by 10
Calgary by 30
Hamilton by 7
Edmonton by 21
posted by DrJohnEvans at 08:45 PM on October 29
Three big upsets this week: Montreal shocks Toronto, B.C. stuns Hamilton, and Ottawa dispatches Winnipeg. Even Saskatchewan opens up a first-quarter lead on Edmonton, but the Esks restore order in the universe by completing the comeback.
The race for second heats up as argoal nails the Edmonton game to jump back into the lead... for second place. Meanwhile, Ying Yang Mafia is making a serious challenge to owlhouse's Costanza hopes.
Two weeks left and nearly everything is still up for grabs. Please complete and submit Grabbing Form 432-B to formally apply for grabs.
B.C. @ Toronto (Friday, October 30)
B.C. is fending off a crossover challenge from the Als, and Toronto is still in the running for the division. But maybe this is less about motivation and more about who's playing well.
Saskatchewan @ Calgary (Saturday, October 31)
Calgary's still reeling from losing their division lead, and they'll need to win out to get back on top. A Guaranteed Win Night against the 'Riders is a good start.
Ottawa @ Hamilton (Sunday, November 1)
Scheduling quirk! These two teams have played since the pre-season, and they finish things off with a home-and-home. Even better: they're tied in the standings. If one team sweeps the two games, they get the division title. If they split, they risk the Argos sneaking in and snatching it away.
Montreal @ Edmonton (Sunday, November 1)
If Montreal wants to keep their crossover hopes alive, they need to keep winning. But "keep winning" has been Edmonton's mantra for the last seven weeks.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 04:28 PM on October 29
I think there are two schools of thought: either Toronto is a conventional baseball market, or it isn't.
If conventional, then AA's approach was too unbalanced, too aggressive, too risky. You need to normalize and build stability.
If unconventional, that means free agent signings are tough and budgets tight. You need to be creative: rely on good drafts and aggressive trades.
Can't help thinking that AA's years under JP disproved the conventional market theory for him. I guess we'll find out if he was right.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 04:17 PM on October 29
Relegation zone. If I finish with the Costanza, does this mean I'm playing in the Ontario regional league next year?
You'll be making picks for the Hamilton Hurricanes.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 10:57 AM on October 23
Toronto by 20
Hamilton by 3
Winnipeg by 8
Edmonton by 14
posted by DrJohnEvans at 07:08 PM on October 22
My points were 5 this week, not 2. It looks like the total is correct, though.
The curses of copy/paste. You are correct. 5 points for 51 total.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 05:01 PM on October 22
Ottawa holds off a late Winnipeg surge to clich their first playoff berth in franchise history. Calgary gets off to a strong start and doesn't look back, beating Toronto in Hamilton. They needed overtime to do it, but Edmonton gets the win over B.C., just barely hanging onto their first-place spot. And Hamilton manages to keep Montreal out of the end zone until the fourth quarter, cruising to a twelve-point victory.
jags nails the Ottawa spread en route to a seven-point week and an all-but-guaranteed victory. argoal also nails the Ottawa spread, but it's not enough to prevent JPR from moving into sole possession of second place.
It's down to the wire: with three weeks left to play, we have three clinches in the east and two in the west, with a possible east-to-west crossover still in play.
Montreal @ Toronto (Friday, October 23)
Toronto's in the playoffs, but they've been having a tough time with their "home on the road" games, and Ottawa's coming up fast in their review mirror. But Montreal's on a tough four-game slide and has been playing some pretty rough ball. An opportunity for Toronto to reverse the momentum?
Hamilton @ B.C. (Friday, October 23)
These two teams appear to be headed in opposite directions: Hamilton is sitting on top of the East and has won two straight, while B.C. is struggling to hang onto a playoff spot, having lost two straight. On the other hand, B.C.'s losses have been very close, and Hamilton's still learning about life without Zach Collaros.
Ottawa @ Winnipeg (Saturday, October 24)
Speaking of close losses, Winnipeg's still smarting from a three-point loss in the opener of the home-and home. They'd better be motivated to equalize this week or they'll fall out of the playoff race altogether.
Edmonton @ Saskatchewan (Saturday, October 24)
In other news, Saskatchewan is still playing football games.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 02:07 PM on October 22
The downside to the sweep is that there is no baseball today.
You know, I used to hate the postseason off-days. I always thought postseason baseball should be played on the schedule as the regular season. I never liked the thought of teams being able to use a three/four-man rotation and a three-man bullpen.
But that was before the Jays made the playoffs. After a crazy ALDS and five games through the ALCS, I'm exhausted. I need to rest up for Game 6. Very thankful for the off-day.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 11:16 AM on October 22
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