I’d like to take a minute to shine a light on what we’re witnessing in Toronto right now.
The Argonauts are putting together a fantastic campaign and have the chance to lock up the East Division this weekend with a win over Montreal.
Plus, a victory means Toronto would improve to 11-1, a record that no Argonauts team in history has ever done. None. Zip. Zero.
Team success is the No. 1 goal, of course, but there’s been a handful of individuals in that group that are doing some pretty remarkable stuff too. (Shoutout to the CFL Stats crew for putting together these notes!)
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Chad Kelly has a record of 10-2, which matches Doug Flutie’s opening run as the Argonauts starter. Kelly and his Argos are averaging 35.2 points per game – currently the fourth highest in team history. The 1990 squad set the benchmark at 38.3. They also have the highest red zone TD rate at 71 per cent – currently tied for fourth in CFL history (since 2004).
Running back/returner Javon Leake has already written himself into Argonauts history books, returning a club-record four punts for touchdowns. He only needs one to tie Henry Williams and Chris Williams for a league-record (five). It’s also pretty wild that over the last four seasons (2018-2022), Toronto only had two returned kicks for majors, and this year they’re already at four.
Another running back having an excellent season in the double blue is AJ Ouellette. He’s on pace for 1,333 yards, which would be the third-highest season total by an Argo player. No. 2 is Cory Boyd at 1,359 in 2010, only a few off Ouellette’s pace, which means Ouellette still could make a run for the second spot. The top rusher in team history is Mike Jenkins (1,484 in 2001).
Is this the best Argonauts team in history? There’s a lot of factors to consider, but you could definitely make that argument. Let’s see what the rest of the year has in store for the Boatmen as they look to repeat as champions in November.
KRISTINA’S CFL FANTASY TEAM
QB – Vernon Adams Jr. ($13,500) CAPTAIN
RB – Kevin Brown ($11,000)
RB – AJ Ouellette ($12,500)
WR – Tim White ($11,500)
WR – Damonte Coxie ($9,000)
Flex – Bralon Addison ($4,500)
Defence – Edmonton Elks ($7,300)
Vernon Adams Jr. is my quarterback and captain this week. VA has put up some big numbers this season and against a REDBLACKS defence that surrenders a league-high 325.8 yards per game though the air, I think he and his receivers can take advantage on Saturday.
Brown has had a ton of touches over the last five games (each game he’s gotten into double digit carries) and he had a big game last week against Calgary (15 carries for 146 yards and a TD for 21 FP). I hope that continues this week against a Roughriders defence that gave up 263 total yards on the ground last week vs. Winnipeg.
Ouellette’s projected to score 14 FP this week against a Montreal defence he had no trouble with last week carrying the rock 19 times for 105 yards and two touchdowns. The Argos running back scored his second-highest fantasy point total against the Als (22.5) and while Montreal is sure to make some adjustments, there’s a good chance he does much of the same on Friday night.
Tim White has become a focal point of the Tiger-Cats offence as of late and that’s why I’m taking him at receiver. He’s hauled in 448 yards in his last four games and three of his five total TDs on the season have come in his last two contests. He scored 38.8 FP last week (and humble brag, I did start him) and it’s likely that Taylor Powell will continue to look to his hottest receiver this week against a tough Bombers squad.
My second receiver is Damonte Coxie, who had 17.2 FP the last time these two teams met in Montreal in Week 6. With Kurleigh Gittens Jr. and Cam Phillips out, I think Coxie gets a ton more targets. And finally, at FLEX I took Bralon Addison. I’m hoping this is a breakout game for Addison who has played in just two games so far this season.
I’m rolling with the Edmonton Elks defence again this week, mostly because of the cheap price tag.
Toronto at Montreal
Friday, 7:00 p.m. ET
Yes, winning back-to-back games against the same opponent is difficult, but when you have a team as good as Toronto, I think the sweep is a definite possibility. Last week the Argos defeated the Als emphatically, scoring four rushing touchdowns and none through the air. If Montreal’s defence can control the run game, I think they have a good chance to make it close, but I still think Toronto locks down the East Division with a win this week.
Edmonton at Saskatchewan
Friday, 9:30 p.m. ET
Dean Faithfull was the hero of Week 14, kicking the game-wining field goal after his team orchestrated the comeback against the Stampeders in the fourth quarter. While the Roughriders will be looking to avenge a beatdown by the Bombers last week, I think Tre Ford and his Elks will get another W this week.
Winnipeg at Hamilton
Saturday, 4:00 p.m. ET
If Winnipeg playing in Hamilton on Hall of Fame night feels like deja vu, it’s because it is. These two teams met at Tim Hortons Field a year ago on HOF night and it was Hamilton that shocked the CFL with a complete win over the Bombers. Of course, that was a year ago and things have changed since then, but I think it’ll be a closer game than what it appears. The Ticats upset Winnipeg in 2022, but I can’t see it happening this year.
Ottawa at BC
Saturday, 7:00 p.m. ET
Coming off a bye, the BC Lions will be well rested when they welcome in the Ottawa REDBLACKS to BC Place. Ottawa has lost six-straight and while this isn’t technically a must-win game for them, it kind of feels like it. BC is the stronger team in my opinion and should get the win.