Week 9 picks: Learn your lesson or pay the price

There are only three games on this week’s CFL schedule but what’s offered is quite interesting.

In addition to the next lesson in the Canadian education of Johnny Football, the slate features one team trying to save their season (B.C.), two trying to establish themselves as elite contenders (Winnipeg and Hamilton) and an Edmonton squad that still has plenty of question marks.

Who needs the Riders, anyway? (Answer: TSN.)

Thursday, Aug. 9
Edmonton at British Columbia, 10 p.m.

At Vancouver, Mike Reilly’s one-yard TD run with 2:43 remaining lifted Edmonton (5-2) to a 26-19 win over Saskatchewan. The Eskimos have won three straight and head to B.C. sporting a 3-0 record within the West Division. The Lions (2-4) have lost two straight overall. Travis Lulay was 25-of-39 passing for 281 yards with a TD and interception in last week’s 27-18 loss to unbeaten Calgary (7-0).

Dunk: Lulay, Lulay Lulay Lulay…LIONS
Edwards: get ready for Jason Maas to go all smashy-smashy. LIONS
Gasson: don’t know why but LIONS.
Hodge: being on a short week won’t help the Lions. ESKS
Ballantine: Lulay had the best week passing since week one against Calgary’s defence. Edmonton’s D is nowhere near Calgary’s calibre. LIONS
Filoso: I want to pick the Lions but I just don’t see it. ESKS
Smith: Edmonton has looked beatable and the Leos have to win again eventually, no? LIONS
Totals: LIONS 5 ESKS 2

Friday, Aug. 10
Hamilton at Winnipeg, 8:30 p.m.

At Winnipeg, the Bombers (4-3) come off the bye leading the CFL in scoring (34.1 points per game), offensive TDs (24), rushing (161.6 yards) and fewest sacks allowed (seven). Their defence has a league-best 11 interceptions. Hamilton (3-4) halted a three-game losing streak with its one-sided victory over Montreal and did earn a 31-17 home win over the Bombers on June 29. Jeremiah Masoli threw for 300 yards with two TDs and two interceptions versus the Alouettes.

Dunk: Hamilton likes playing at IGF and the Tabbies are better on the road. TICATS
Edwards: at this point, I don’t trust either of these teams. Ah, screw it. TICATS
Gasson: the Bombers are finding their groove. BOMBERS
Hodge: Winnipeg makes it three in a row. BOMBERS
Ballantine: with apologies to Dennis Green, when it comes to the Ticats, they aren’t who I thought they were. BOMBERS
Filoso: pretty simple, Winnipeg is better in every area. BOMBERS
Smith: Hamilton has only lost once at IGF since it opened, but Winnipeg is the most complete team in the CFL and are just hitting their stride. BOMBERS

Saturday, Aug. 11
Montreal at Ottawa, 8 p.m.

Johnny Manziel’s first CFL regular-season appearance last week was one to forget. The former Heisman Trophy winner was 11-of-20 passing for 104 yards and four interceptions in Montreal’s lopsided 50-11 loss to the visiting Hamilton Tiger-Cats. Montreal will face an ornery Ottawa squad. The Redblacks (4-3) held a commanding 38-14 second-half lead last week in Toronto before the Argonauts rallied for the stunning 42-41 victory at BMO Field.

Dunk: Manziel plays better but he can only make up for so much. REDBLACKS
Edwards: Johnny Manziel is no McLeod Bethel-Thompson. REDBLACKS
Gasson: the only franchise in Ottawa that night that is more dysfunctional than the Als is the Senators. REDBLACKS
Hodge: Johnny Manziel vs. Noel Thorpe? REDBLACKS
Ballantine: Ottawa will be coming in surly. REDBLACKS
Filoso: Ottawa bounces back in a big way. REDBLACKS
Smith: If McLeod Bethel-Thompson can shred the Redblacks’ defence, Johnny Manziel can too… right? No, no he can’t. REDBLACKS

Byes: Calgary, Saskatchewan, Toronto

2018 Records
Dunk: 22-9
Edwards: 22-9
Ballantine: 21-10
Smith: 20-11
Filoso: 20-11
Gasson: 20-11
Hodge: 20-11


60 Comments on Week 9 picks: Learn your lesson or pay the price

  1. Unfortunately for John Manziel and Alouette Fan, it’s not possible for a QB at the pro level to “learn” arm strength or accuracy.

    At this point, you’ve either got it or you don’t got it – – and as we’ve seen, Manziel most assuredly does not.

    • Arse51 at it again lol.

    • There is no issue with his arm strength or accuracy in practice Area51. The issue, in my opinion, is two-fold; first is accuracy of route running by the WR core-the second is simply adrenaline, often when a QB throws high he is experiencing high adrenaline. He’ll make the adjustments. Frankly the oline was really bad. I was very impressed with how agile he was in the pocket.

      I think you are wrong on Manziel….so many challenges that you did not factor in, bad oline coaching and pass protection, 3 days to prepare while under massive media scrutiny, no chemistry with the wr and simplified play book. The part I love is the kid isn’t making excuses, is working day and night to get better. Will Montreal’s pass protection be better this week…I doubt it- will they give him fast reads on some shorter routes so he can execute before the pocket collapses and he only has the long ball left….I can only hope.

      The difference between Bethel-Thompson and Streveler’s success is the game plan and coaching. Trestman has four quick reads in his game plan for BT, sets him up for success. Streveler has the same with the addition of the highest running plays in the league utilizing Andrew Harris specifically. If you look at the pass completion charts for both these QBs and JM’s from last week you can see it pretty clearly.

      The balance of both of these game plans(TOR and WPG)-averaging 26 running plays per game (as opposed to Montreal’s 14 running plays per game)- not only controls the time of possession and keeps the D fresh, it also keeps the opposition DLine honest with less blitzing and more containment.

      I am very interested in how Montreal adjusts to deal with some of the challenges they experienced last week. I think Manziel is the real meal deal and the league is better if Sherman and company can figure this out pdq.

      • BleedingGreen // August 9, 2018 at 5:57 pm //

        Careful there 2.0, stop being so damn objective. Round this place most just dump on players, coaches and teams it’s so much easier to be negative. How dare you have an objective opinion…

        • I agree, BleedingGreen. It would be absolutely wonderful if some of the trolls would consider being objective instead of showing hatred and jealousy. I would rather compliment others instead of throwing barbs.

          • Blue rules // August 9, 2018 at 7:10 pm //

            2.0, Bleeding Green, Greenrider89
            All Y’all are full of crap, nobody on this site is negative, you’re all wasting my time!!!!!get a life, stay of this site..LOL,LOL,LOL.
            I mean I agree with you, sometimes I’m guilty too & likely will be again, please except a preemptive appoligy.
            1 (one) thing for sure Rider’s WILL NOT loose the weekend.
            My picks are………
            Double E
            Single Blue
            O Double TT

          • True Green // August 9, 2018 at 7:29 pm //

            Blue rules, I laughed pretty hard at your Rider prediction!

            They also won’t lose labour day weekend…

          • Blue rules // August 9, 2018 at 8:18 pm //

            @ True, Bomber’s are not just looking for a victory on Labor Day, but back to back victories including the Banjo bowl. Lol, enjoy the games this weekend, rest up, get healthy, your going to need all you got come September.

    • Foodie Foodnerd // August 9, 2018 at 6:14 pm //

      It’s also impossible to learn hoe to read a playbook this late in his brief career, especiallu when he still doesn’t think he needs to bother.

  2. Every week, I watch MTL and wonder: how did SSK lose to this team??

  3. Area you said the same thing about Masoli. He shredded mtl last week and is still a CFL record holder with others.

  4. David Tress // August 9, 2018 at 3:23 pm //

    Manziel will get better. He actually showed he is still very mobile as a qb.

  5. Dan Bombers // August 9, 2018 at 3:41 pm //

    Bombers , Esks and redblacks
    Go blue

  6. Diehardticat // August 9, 2018 at 3:57 pm //

    Filoso watch: last week he picked Mtl to beat Hamilton. Huh? How did that go my Brazilian friend? Too much sun for you? This week, he claims that Wpg is better in every way than Hamilton. I am waiting for Wpg/Ott and where he says that Ott is better than Wpg in every way. Once again, Filoso picks the orher team when Cats are the opponent. Filoso’s picking the opponent vs Cats is at 19 games straight. This explains in part why his win/loss record is near the bottom of those picking. What a joke he is. Is this the best Journalist/beat reporter Ott has?

    • George Fogarty // August 9, 2018 at 11:39 pm //

      Give it up dufus your the joke with your constant whining. Why don’t you reveal your picks every week Tryturdticat and we’ll see where you end up.

    • Agree. Filoso is horrible. Maybe soccer is more his niche.

  7. Lions by 7

    Ti-Cats by 3, unless there’s another 5 hour lightning storm delay, then Bombers by 50…

    Redblacks by 14…..GO ALs!!!…Need to keep it close in the EAST…

    • lol id laff if hamilton managed to get a fluke against the bombers.

      • RealityCheck // August 9, 2018 at 9:11 pm //

        Well this is the CFL where anything could happen and usually does. If the Bombers are as overconfident as their fans, then I say Cats by 14!!!!

  8. Paul Bomber // August 9, 2018 at 4:25 pm //

    Expecting a violent game on Friday at IGF. I think (hope) this is where the Bombers start separating themselves from the middle of the pack. But that Masoli character… I dunno… when he gets rolling sometimes, he’s hard to stop. But not going to happen friday.
    Ottawa by a bunch & flip a coin on Edm/BC.

    • Dan Bombers // August 9, 2018 at 7:20 pm //

      Hey Paul did you check the weather !! Supposed to be nice tomorrow so hopefully no delay they get expensive!!I’m sure management doesn’t mind ,anyways can’t wait go blue I’m nervous about this one can you blame me !!

    • winnipegs defence is better htan the last time they played the cats, their offense is also better and are the most complete team , offense, defense, special teams that the league has. winnipeg at least by 12 id say but we will see what good ol mazola oil can do.

      • CatsontheProwl // August 9, 2018 at 9:43 pm //

        Really??, What exactly are you basing your premise that the Bombers defense can be considered one of the CFL’s best, definitely not by their past performances:

        Games where the Bomber defense looked dominate:

        Drew Willy and the Alouettes
        Jonathan Jennings and the Lions
        James Franklin and the Argos
        James Franklin and the Argos

        Games where the bomber defense faltered and looked average:

        Mike Reilly and the Eskimos
        Jeremiah Masoli and the Cats
        Travis Lulay and the Lions

        Here what will probably happen; if Masoli get’s into a rhythm early, then the Bomber defense will be torched. However; if Masoli has one of his off nights, then the Cats will only win by 3.

        • BlueBomberChris // August 10, 2018 at 12:32 am //

          CatsontheProwl you might want to rethink some of your examples there. I agree the Bombers D isn’t one of the league’s best but they are certainly hitting their stride and have improved from some early season gaffs.

          You cite the two Argos games, well that same Argo offense put up over 40 points on the RedBlack defense that held your tabbies to only field goals. The Edmonton game well that one had its own set of challenges with the historically long weather delay and being the first game of the year. I think most REASONABLE fans didn’t base their entire thoughts on the Bombers D based squarely on that game.

          Did you win earlier in the year sure but we have some key players (namely our starting QB) playing tomorrow where they weren’t in the first game. It’s naive to think that it’ll be the exact outcome again. It will be hard fought, back and forth close game but I believe the Bombers will prove they are a stronger all around team as the night wears on.

          • CatsontheProwl // August 10, 2018 at 8:53 am //

            Hey Chris,

            Those examples I used were lifted from a Blue bomber forum; just wanted to see if anyone would notice. As for my prediction; it was meant more as a sarcastic joke; which obviously didn’t go over as such. I do however believe it will be a close game and can see the Ti-Cats pulling out a win, as their previous loses were more of a case of them shooting themselves in the foot and taking dumb penalties. Enjoy the game; should be a good one!!

  9. Arcade fire // August 9, 2018 at 4:31 pm //

    Area 51 is not prejudiced he hates everyone..old Bill Cosby line

  10. True Green // August 9, 2018 at 4:48 pm //

    The first two are pretty tough to pick…
    Lions (Edmonton is beatable and Lulay has the skill)
    Bombers (Masoli is on fire AND he’s burning the house down, can’t trust his performance)

  11. Upcoming CFL games:

    B.C. by 10 — Lions are vastly improved with the leadership of Lulay while Edmonton is not as good as their record indicates.

    Hamilton by 7 — really feel an upset is in the making and the Ti-Cats are better than their record indicates against a very strong Winnipeg team.

    Ottawa by 21 — and the difference could be much worse in Ottawa. Montreal is the doormats of the CFL and Kavis Reed’s doings have created a horrible mess.

    • Typical riders fan jealous of an Eskimo team every year as long as the Eskies continue to beat the bottom feeder riders every year I’m happy , nobody I enjoy beating more than the lowly riders, if you take bc by 10 over the Eskies the lions should beat lowly riders by 20

      • True Green // August 9, 2018 at 5:16 pm //

        Jealous? No. Respectful? Yes. You could try that. I spent a wonderful 2.5 hours in your stadium last week along many good natured Eskies fans. You must have been in a different section.

      • Well, if it isn’t Dumb Dave the typical deadmenton fan who always picks the opposition when the Riders are playing. Aren’t you still in Weyburn? And just wondering if you got your special green and white jersey yet?

        • Eskimos 26 lowly riders 19
          Eskies 5-2
          Lowly riders 3-4 and soon to be 3-8
          Enough said

        • smart money says to bet against the riders every game because they are almost gaurunteed to lose more than they win every year .That being said if you want to win easy money bet against the bottom feeders like the riders

        • His shirt with the wrap around sleeves and his eating helmet were delivered last Tuesday 89. I tracked the delivery to ensure it arrived safely.

          • Yup your not all there ,you think you would learn your lesson by getting owned by all the non riders fans.Must we bring the Mtl Allouettes back to mosaic to teach your riders another lesson

          • Hey double d. Glad you got your computer privileges back. Must have been the sh*ts sitting on that bench looking at a tree all day long.

            Best behave or the staff won’t let you stay up late to watch the game. Hope the jersey and helmet both fit snugly – take care!

          • Impalast // August 9, 2018 at 9:31 pm //

            Why is it gr89 and yup are always defending each other? Do you make a straight jacket for two? Hey, just asking

          • You’re too polite, Yup. I’d just rather call Dave by his real name. By the way, Dumb Dave, who’s the impersonator, rather, impalast? He seems to be a very “personal” friend of yours, doesn’t he?

          • Did Dave get the extra long sleeves?

    • Blue rules // August 9, 2018 at 7:18 pm //

      Greenrider89, Sound like wishful choices being you cheer for Rider’s to not lose any positioning. I’m good with your top and bottom picks though!

      • At least the riders can’t lose again this weekend

        • Correction, Sliders lose, even when they don’t play, because they’re probably at home in Regina, wishing that they were in Alberta, nothing to do Saskatchewan

          • Make sure your pal double d shares the popcorn during the game. But get your own bowl, no telling where his hands have been.

          • Yes, I can’t imagine how much fun it is to hunt weasels and beavers. Bet you wear your Johnny Crocket hat, too. You’re so lucky.

        • No, and it was a very unlucky loss last weekend in Deadmonton. Can’t hardly wait to play you losers again. By the way, you should be sleeping. Have to mention this to the staff.

      • Actually, Blue. Don’t mind the Bombers at all, it’s just the province west of us (I believe it’s called Alberta Arrogance).

    • lol ti cats are not gonna beat the bombesr here by 7 coming off a bye week, bc will not beat the esks by 10 on a short week and bc hardly beats anyone that matters and ottawa u think they can score 21? lol!

  12. BlueBomberChris // August 9, 2018 at 5:21 pm //

    Lions – As had been said by one of the writers EDM looks beatable at the moment, and it would certainly help my Bombers out to have them lose. Either way this one is a coin flip with BC coming out on top after a back and forth game

    Bombers – Before our previous match up in week 3 it was suggested that Wpg only beat MTL so the victory did not carry as much weight (at least in Ticat fans eyes). Ironic that it is reversed this time for our 2nd game. While it should be a good game the Bombers will come out on top. They beat us using 8 plays from the playbook and why we lost then are all easily correctable mistakes. We’ve learned our lesson from week 3.

    Ottawa – Because they have the free space this week

    • our defense has also stopped giving up 400 plus yards a game and starting to hit its stride, on offense, defense and special teams, it would take a miracle from mazola oil to upset the bombers esp on an extra weeks rest and practise whereas montreal ran up the score on montreal and used every play in the book. winnipeg will not fall victim to it and even in the last meeting the bombers came out to a lead against the pussy tabbies

  13. TouchDownBC // August 9, 2018 at 5:33 pm //

    Eskimos over Lions 34-14

  14. Bombsquad // August 9, 2018 at 5:49 pm //

    Esks- the Lions can win this game if they stay out of penalty trouble, but its a big if.

    Bombers- WPG isn’t Montreal, TI-Cats win was a mirage, they’ll go back to their losing ways.

    Red Blacks- Might not be a blowout and Manziel should be better, but i don’t see the Als winning.

  15. Edmonton by SIX (6) – BC is at home and Lulay is playing well. But Reilly digs down and pulls out the W

    Winnipeg by TEN (10) – Bombers are a well rounded team. They’re rested and playing at home. The “pop gun” offence will go and the beer will flow.

    Ottawa by FOURTEEN (14) – Rod Black will profess his love for Manziel for FOUR (4) quarters but that won’t help. JM will play better but Ottawa is pis*ed after losing to Apologist 51’s crew last week

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