Week 5 is upon us, with four intriguing matchups that offer #TotalPickEm players some interesting options.
Keep in mind: This column went 3-1 last week, and is 12-3 (80%) on the year.
Thursday | Edmonton at BC (10 p.m. ET)
What better way to kick off Week 5 than a tantalizing matchup between QB Mike Reilly and his new-look BC Lions (1-3) against his former team in Edmonton (2-1)? Throw in Canadian country star Tim Hicks as the #TNF halftime act, and it’s Here Comes The Thunder, indeed.
A win is a win, but BC never looked comfortable last week and needed a Chris Rainey misstep on the final play of the game to beat the last-place Argos 18-17.
QB Trevor Harris and the Esks could separate themselves from the bottom of the West with a win on Thursday. (Walter Tychnowicz/CFL.ca)
Edmonton is fresh off a bye, and beat BC by 16 points just three weeks ago.
PICK: Edmonton, although it could be a close contest as the Esks fell behind by double-digits in Week 2 before storming back for a comfortable win over the Leos.
Friday | Toronto at Winnipeg (8:30 p.m. ET)
It’s No. 1 vs. No. 9 in the Nissan Titan Power Rankings on Friday Night Football, as the Bombers (3-0) host the Argos (0-3) at IG Field.
Winnipeg’s strength comes from its defence, which has allowed just three touchdowns all season en route to allowing a league-low 19.3 points-per-game; Toronto, on the flip side, has struggled for offence generating just 12.7 points-per-game thus far in 2019.
The Argos will need tangible results from journeyman QB McLeod Bethel-Thompson in order to create upset conditions in Winnipeg. (Geoff Robins/CFL.ca)
One silver lining in last week’s heartbreaker for the Double Blue was the defence limiting Reilly and the Leos to just 18 points — nonetheless, McLeod Bethel-Thompson and the offence will need to be more productive for Toronto to have any chance of engineering an upset.
PICK: Winnipeg, because numbers usually don’t lie. With that said, winless Montreal beat undefeated Hamilton last week: This is the CFL!
Saturday | Montreal at Ottawa (4 p.m. ET)
In what might be the most interesting matchup of Week 5, the Als (1-2) travel down the highway for a divisional date with the REDBLACKS (2-1).
Saturday afternoon’s meeting could be pivotal in deciding the power dynamics in the East this season; will Hamilton and Ottawa continue to be a cut above Toronto and Montreal, or are the Als ready to challenge the established hierarchy?
If the Als can find the right balance on offence and feed William Stanback, the sky’s the limit on Saturday. (The Canadian Press)
William Stanback was a game-breaker last week against Hamilton, and if Montreal can establish the ground game early in the nation’s capital…
PICK: Montreal, because last week’s Als win over Hamilton felt like the beginning of something different and the team has a legitimate game-breaking talent now.
Saturday | Calgary at Hamilton (7 p.m. ET)
Speaking of intriguing contests, the Bo-less Stamps (2-1) head to the Hammer for a contest with the East-leading Ticats (3-1) to close out Week 5.
Bo’s replacement Nick Arbuckle appears to be the truth, having completed 28 of 31 passes for three touchdowns in his first five quarters of football, while running back Ka’Deem Carey impressed in his CFL debut last week in Regina.
The loss of budding running back Sean Thomas Erlington means the offensive expectations will fall wholly on the shoulders of QB Jeremiah Masoli. (The Canadian Press)
Orlondo Steinauer’s Ticats were stunned by the Als last week in Montreal, and would love to get that sour taste out of their mouths entering their bye next week.
PICK: Hamilton, because as robotically efficient as the Stamps have been it’s likely we’ll see some regression from the team’s backups — plus the Tabbies will be fired up to get back in the win column with Ottawa breathing down their neck.
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