Winnipeg Blue Bombers (1-7) at Saskatchewan Roughriders (7-1)Sunday, 4 p.m. (EDT)
Although this is a battle between the best of the West and the worst of the East, it’s still a traditional rivalry game. Desperation oozes in Winnipeg as the tail-spinning Bombers are on a six-game slide. Head coach Tim Burke delivered an impassioned warning this week to play better or ship out. Injuries plague the Blue and Gold, and the agonizing weekly decision of who to start at quarterback has settled on Justin Goltz. Saskatchewan has lost just once all year, but was pushed to the brink by a struggling Edmonton squad last week. Kory Sheets continues to run wild, Darian Durant has yet to throw a pick and the defence has allowed the fewest points and touchdowns in the CFL. The Riders have defeated the Bombers on Labour Day the past eight seasons – including a 52-0 throttling last year.
The pick: Saskatchewan
Edmonton Eskimos (1-7)
at Calgary Stampeders (6-2)
Monday, 5 p.m. (EDT)
One of the great traditional matchups in Canadian football resumes Labour Day, but this year, it involves two rivals in opposite situations. The Stampeders are riding high, while the Eskimos are tumbling wildly through a six-game losing skid. However, the Esks did show some fight last week, while slipping narrowly to Saskatchewan, as quarterback Mike Reilly looked efficient and Fred Stamps pulled in eight catches for 111 yards and two touchdowns. Jon Cornish, July’s CFL player of the month, returns to the Stamps lineup, which should take some heat off signal caller Kevin Glenn. While Edmonton looked a little better last week, it’s unlikely to be enough to thwart a determined Calgary squad looking to keep pace with Saskatchewan in the West.
The pick: Calgary
Montreal Alouettes (3-5)
at Toronto Argonauts (5-3)
Tuesday, 7:30 p.m. (EDT)
Fans expecting veteran quarterbacks Anthony Calvillo and Ricky Ray to square off are out of luck. Quick-footed Zach Collaros will start for Toronto (Ray has an injured shoulder). Calgary snapped Toronto’s four-game win string last week, with an uneasy-looking Collaros entering after Ray went down. Tanner Marsh appears likely to make his first CFL start for the Als as Calvillo deals with a head injury, adding to the team’s lengthy list of wounded. Taking over last week, Marsh led Montreal to a dramatic come-from-behind win over the B.C. Lions. The Boatmen are still shoring up their defence, and the Als have the second-worse turnover margin (minus-9) in the league. Look for the team with the most poised young quarterback to win.
The pick: TorontoReport Typo/Error