TORONTO — The weather is cooling down but things are heating up in the CFL as Week 14 of the regular season gets under way.
The Alouettes and Lions kickoff on Friday night as Montreal hosts BC in the first of three games this week. Wally Buono makes his final appearance in Montreal as a coach – a place where he played ten seasons (1972-81). BC will be looking to make it two wins in a row as they have a chance to tie the idle Winnipeg Blue Bombers at 10 points with a victory in Montreal. It won’t be easy as the Montreal Alouettes are fresh off a bye and going for three wins in a row, a feat they have not accomplished since 2016. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. ET.
Saturday has two games on slate. In Hamilton, the Canadian Football Hall of Fame game will take place when the Calgary Stampeders come to Tim Hortons Field beginning at 4:00 p.m. ET. The Class of 2018 – Paul Brûlé, Frank Cosentino, Scott Flory, the late Tom Hugo, Hank Ilesic, Brent Johnson and Barron Miles – will be honoured at halftime. Hamilton (6-5) enters the game riding a three-game winning streak and look to extend it as they eye the first-place position in the East Division. After a near last play comeback in Edmonton, Calgary (9-2) search for their 10th victory of the year. If they get it, it will mark the 11th consecutive season they reach double-digit wins.
The final game of the week features the East-leading Ottawa REDBLACKS taking on the Saskatchewan Roughriders. Saskatchewan shoots for their fifth win in a row for the first time since 2014. Ottawa REDBLACKS hope to finish their two-game west road trip with a 1-1 record following their loss last week versus BC. The game is scheduled for 9:30 p.m. ET.
RECAP: POINTS GALORE IN BATTLE OF ALBERTA SATURDAY
Edmonton’s thrilling 48-42 victory over provincial rivals the Calgary Stampeders set some offensive benchmarks that have not happened in the league for a while.
It marked the 29th time in 61 years of history that both teams scored 40+ points. The last time a game that didn’t go to overtime saw both teams score 40+ points was Oct. 16, 2005: Montreal 46 – BC 44.
The last time two teams combined for 1,000+ yards in a game was Aug. 18, 2013 with Toronto (519) vs. Edmonton (549).
The highest one-possession non-OT game was Oct. 17, 1982: Calgary 55 – Hamilton 48.
The 90 total pass attempts put the contest just inside the Top 80 (top 2% all-time) most aerial games ever out of 4,486.
It was also the highest-scoring Edmonton/Calgary game in history
The 90 points scored help make Week 13 the highest-scoring week of the season (62.5 ppg).
The game’s 12 offensive touchdowns were one short of the CFL record of 13.
CFL SIMULATION IS BACK
ca published the CFL Simulation that outlines various probabilities to win each division, host a playoff game, make it to the Grey Cup, win the Grey Cup,.
The model considers the following:
Each team’s current win-loss record.
Opponents already played (including whether it was a home or away game).
Margin of victory (or loss) in games previously played in the season.
Remaining opponents to be played (including whether those games are home or away).
Most recent results (a recent win is weighted more heavily than a win back in Week 1, for example).
The Riders have set a team record with eight defensive TDs and are three away from tying the CFL record set by BC in 1987 with 11.
Including their two punt return TDs, they have 10 total return touchdowns this season. That is only four fewer than the 14 offensive touchdowns they have scored this year.
In the last four games, the Riders’ defence and special teams have scored five touchdowns while their offence has scored six.
Saskatchewan is currently on a four-game winning streak for the first time since 2014, when they had a seven-game winning streak.
Last week was the second time in CFL history that a team had two interception returns of 95+ yards in a single game. Willie Jefferson returned one for 97 yards and Samuel Eguavoen returned an interception 103 yards.
Nick Marshall leads the Riders with six touchdowns (two interception returns and four touchdowns in short yardage).
They have 10 return touchdowns made by eight different players (Christion Jones, Willie Jefferson, Charleston Hughes, Kyron Moore, Nick Marshall, Tobi Antigha, Duron Carter, and Samuel Eguavoen).
Brandon Bridge engineered his second fourth-quarter winning drive of the season.
Brandon Banks joined Duke Williams as the only receivers to reach the 1,000-yard mark so far this season.
This is Banks’ second consecutive season hitting the mark and his 1,033 yards are already a career high with seven games left in the season. He’s on pace for 1,690 receiving yards this season.
Since being inserted into the lineup as an every-down player (2017 Labour Day) Banks has amassed 128 receptions for 1,992 yards and 14 touchdowns in 21 games. In 13 of those games he notched 100+ yards.
In the same time frame (since June Jones was named head coach) Masoli has passed for 6,608 yards, only trailing Mike Reilly. The team has gone 12-9 after starting 0-8.
Ottawa’s Brad Sinopoli (894) is 106 yards away from securing his fourth straight 1,000-yard season. He has reached the mark in each season he’s been a part of the Ottawa REDBLACKS.
Last season the CFL saw 14 receivers surpass the 1,000-yard mark. In 2016, 15.
Andrew Harris chases the 1,000-rushing yard mark next week as the Blue Bombers are on a bye. Harris is only 26 yards shy of the benchmark.
Wally Buono visits Montreal for the final time as a head coach in the CFL. He played ten seasons and 156 games for the Alouettes, never missing a game. He played 78 regular season home games in Montreal.
Since stepping in at QB, Antonio Pipkin has jumped from 14 points to 23 points per game produced by their offence, a nine-point difference. The Als registered 251 yards per game prior to Pipkin being named a starter and have improved that average to 332 yards per game, a 79-yard difference.
The Lions stopped Trevor Harris last week, holding him to 216 passing yards. Ottawa’s previous six starts saw Harris throw for 300+ yards each time. Against the REDBLACKS BC generated a season-high 16 points off four Ottawa turnovers.
Ottawa kicker Lewis Ward extended his made field goal streak to 29, the fourth-longest in CFL history. He is one short of tying Paul McCallum for third all-time. He’s 11 away from breaking Rene Paredes’ record of 39 in a row.
His percentage on the season of 97% is ahead of Paredes’ record of 95% set in 2013.
Bo Levi Mitchell threw for a career-high 491 passing yards on Saturday. Of the 491 yards, 246 and three touchdowns came on 15 pass attempts deeper than 20 yards down field. The touchdown passes on those plays were 77, 41 and 32 yards.
Mike Reilly engineered six touchdowns in the game last week versus Calgary (three pass, three rush) and is on pace for 55 touchdowns on the season.
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