CFL Thursday Night Football Week 1
Sports Interaction Football Games
The first game of the week – and the first game of the CFL season – sees the Montreal Alouettes playing host to the Saskatchewan Roughriders. Even though these two teams both missed the playoffs in 2016, this is one of the more anticipated games – of not just week one – but the entire season. Darian Durant – now Montreal’s quarterback – spent the first decade of his CFL career with Saskatchewan, making this his first game against his former team. The second game of the week is just as good, if not better. On Friday night, the CFL treats their fans to a rematch of the 2016 Grey Cup – a game that saw the Ottawa Redblacks upset the Calgary Stampeders in overtime.
For game three, we head out West – where the BC Lions host the Edmonton Eskimos. The Lions and Eskimos are thought to be the two biggest challenges to Calgary – who enter the 2017 season as the favourite to win the Grey Cup. Wrapping up week one is a battle of Ontario as the Hamilton Tiger-Cats make the short trip to Toronto to play the Argonauts.
The odds for week one’s slate of games are now available on Sports Interaction. With some careful review and considerations, there are a couple of smart picks from three of the four games in week one. Below you will find the picks and an explanation on why you should make that bets.
Canadian Football League Picks Week 1
- Saskatchewan at Montreal: Over 50.5 (-110) at Sports Interaction
Start the 2017 CFL regular season off with a bet on the over of the first game. At 50.5, the Montreal Alouettes – Saskatchewan Roughriders match offers the lowest over/under of the four games in week one. Strictly looking at 2016 stats would suggest this is a risky bet – as the two teams combined to average 40.7 points per game. However, both teams improved their offences. If both teams see their offences improve from last/second last to middle of the league, then they would combine for 55.2 points. Add in the fact that both teams’ quarterbacks looked good in the preseason (combining to go 12-19 for 194 yards and two touchdowns), and the over is the way to go on Thursday night. in Montreal.
- Calgary at Ottawa: Calgary -2.5 (-110) at Sports Interaction
Week one features a rematch of the 2016 Grey Cup as the Calgary Stampeders travels to Ottawa to play on Friday, June 23. The Ottawa Redblacks may be the host and reigning champions, Calgary is the better team. Ottawa dealt with much more turnover than Calgary in the offseason, which may hinder them in the early parts of the season. Add in the revenge fact, as Calgary will look to avenge their Grey Cup loss, and at just -2.5 taking Calgary on the road is the right call.
- Hamilton at Toronto: Hamilton -3.0 (-120) at Sports Interaction
The last game of week one stars two bitter rivals, looking to start off 2017 with a win. For the Toronto Argonauts, 2017 will be a year of rebuilding for the future. Because of this, even at home, they are the underdog. In 2016, the Hamilton Tiger-Cats beat Toronto in the season opener 42-20. The Argos had the worst home record in 2016 (going 2-7 at BMO Field). Hamilton at -3 is a good pick, as they played the East well last season and are the better team.
The first week of any sports season is always one of the hardest to predict correctly. Teams have new players, coaches and playbooks. For many teams, week one will be the first time their entire starting lineup plays together for a full game. This is one of the challenges of week one. Although, the preseason is quite useful in gauging a team’s potential, going off a single quarter of play is almost never indicative of a full game or season. As the season progresses, each team’s strength and weaknesses become more apparent. For week one though, reading season predictions, following offseason stories and staying up to date on injuries is the best way to find success.
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