2017 Grey Cup Outright Odds and Predictions
Canadian Football League Outright Odds
The 2017 Canadian Football League season commences on June 22, 2017, in Montreal. From June 22 on, CFL fans get 20 weeks of football action running all the way to November 4, 2017. Between then, fans and bettors will get to see over 80 games of football on route to the very first Grey Cup in Ottawa – on November 26, 2017 – since 2004.
Make sure to mark down Labour Day weekend and Thanksgiving as they are the weekend when the CFL lights shine the brightest and they showcase their biggest rivalries.
It is hard to pick against Calgary in 2017. They have the most talented roster in the CFL and are coming off one of the best seasons in CFL history. Their quarterback – Bo Levi Mitchell – is the reigning winner of the CFL’s Most Outstanding Player Award and he is surrounded by All-Stars.
The biggest knock against Calgary is the fact they play in the Western Division. Their biggest challengers for the Grey Cup are Edmonton and British Columbia. While neither of those teams are as talented as the Calgary Stampeders, it is reasonable to see either of them beating Calgary in a single elimination playoff game.
British Columbia Lions
With, maybe the best offence in the CFL, the BC Lions are a serious contender for the 2017 Grey Cup. The addition of Chris Williams – one of the best wide receivers in the league – takes their offence to a new height in 2017.
The Lions have added some depth on defence, but it is too early to tell if it will be enough to stop – or at least slow down – the other high-flying offences in the Western Division.
With much of their 2015 Grey Cup-winning roster still intact, the Edmonton Eskimos are one of the best teams in the CFL. The team is deep on both sides of the ball, especially offence. They do have the challenge of playing in the West, and some believe the team is under-coached.
Jason Maas enters his second year as head coach of the Edmonton Eskimos. He was fine, if unspectacular in 2016. He looks poised to take a step forward in 2017. However, assuming such could backfire and the Eskimos may once again finish closer to .500, which may force them to play multiple road playoff games against the Eastern Division.
Winnipeg Blue Bombers
The Blue Bombers lay claim to one of the best defences in the CFL. Their head coach – former CFL linebacker – Mike O’Shea built consistently on the defensive side of the ball over his first few season as the Bombers head coach, and now the unit looks to pay dividends.
The issue for the Bombers is their offence. Their quarterback – Matt Nichols – is still unproven. He started 15 games in 2016, but only managed to toss 18 touchdowns. If he cannot see that number improve in 2017, the Bombers do not have the offence to keep up in the West.
The Tiger-Cats are not in the best position in 2017, but they still have a chance at winning the East. Hamilton plays well against their Eastern divisional foes, and their offence ranked first in the East in 2016 with 28.2 points per game.
What hurts the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, is the fact their window may have closed. They only won seven games in 2016 and their quarterback – Zach Collaros – has never played a full season in the CFL. Their well-documented struggles against the West ern Division– including a 2-9 mark last season – do not do the Tiger-Cats any favours.
The reigning champions come in tied for the fifth best Grey Cup odds in 2017. The team is experienced and well coached, more so than any other team in the East. This will help them mitigate their offseason losses. However, it may not be enough to get them back to the Grey Cup.
The loss of Chris Williams and Henry Burris’ retirement do not help the Ottawa Redblacks in 2017. Their quarterback Trevor Harris has shown success in the regular season, however, in both 2015 and 2016 he lost his job to a veteran quarterback shortly before the post-season.
As arguably, the busiest team this off-season, expectations are for the Roughriders to be better in 2017. The team improved on both offence and defence and should be able to win more than one game against the West in 2017 – which helps their odds of making the playoffs.
However, not all is golden in the city of Regina. The Roughriders recently cut their highest profile offseason signing – former NFL quarterback Vince Young. While this may be a blessing in disguise, it puts more pressure on their presumptive starter 38-year-old, Kevin Glenn. Glenn is passed his prime and has not played a full season since 2014.
At the end of 2016, the Alouettes were in disarray, but the acquisition of quarterback Darian Durant has seen their fortunes change. Durant looked great in his preseason debut, tossing two touchdowns and 113 yards in one-quarter of work. Considering the Als just missed out of the postseason in 2016, and with the addition of Durant, the Als are a serious contender in the East.
What holds the Alouettes back in 2017 is the cast surrounding Durant on offence. The Montreal Alouettes added another offensive weapon in wide receiver Ernest Jackson, but the remaining players from 2016 did not work well together. If they struggle to build chemistry, the Alouettes will be in for another rough season, although their defence could pick up some of the slack.
There is not a lot of optimism in Toronto this season. The Argos are in the midst of a rebuild and have the worst odds for the 2017 Grey Cup. If their quarterback – Ricky Ray – can play a full season and the team can avoid any other serious injuries, the Argos have an outside shot.
The Argos are not focusing on winning in 2017. This past offseason, the Argos brought in new coaches and management whose goal is to build for the future. Because of this, the Toronto Argonauts are not likely to be very good in 2017.
How To Pick Winners In CFL?
There are many betting strategies to consider when picking a winner in any sport, but for a league the size of the CFL, one approach reigns supreme. Since every team has odds greater than +200, the best bet is to take the favourite – the Calgary Stampeders – and hedge that bet with one or two smaller bets on underdogs.
Using the odds on Sports Interaction – it is possible to bet $200 on Calgary (at +260) and hedge that bet with $100 on the BC Lions (+500) and the Edmonton Eskimos (+600). Any of these three teams winning the Grey Cup guarantees the bettors a profit between $100 and $200. Switching out BC or Edmonton for an Eastern Division team is also a smart strategy.
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