Calgary Stampeders (12-3) at Edmonton Eskimos (3-12)
Friday, 9 p.m. (EDT)
Calgary has the league’s best record and holds sole position of first in the West Division, four points ahead of Saskatchewan. The Stamps have already locked up a playoff spot, but the picture is not set yet. If Calgary wins this week, and Saskatchewan falls to B.C., the Stamps can clinch the division. Look for another big week from Calgary RB Jon Cornish, who rumbled for 130 yards last week to extend his record for single-season rushing by a Canadian to 1,545. This Eskimos squad has no momentum, having squandered three in a row, and has already been eliminated from the playoffs.
The pick: Calgary
Toronto Argonauts (9-6) at Winnipeg Blue Bombers (3-12)
Saturday, 3:30 p.m. (EDT)
Two weeks ago, the Argos were on a four-game win streak and held a cushy lead atop the East. But they have since suffered back-to-back losses to Hamilton, and the Ticats are threatening to steal the East Division title. It’ll be QB Ricky Ray’s second game back and the Argos need to win to regain control of their playoff fate. A Toronto win this week, or a Montreal loss, would clinch the Argos a home playoff game. But the basement-dwelling Bombers showed some life last week (upsetting the Als), desperate to keep alive slim postseason chances.
The pick: Toronto
B.C. Lions (9-6) at Saskatchewan Roughriders (10-5)
Saturday, 7 p.m. (EDT)
The elbowing for position in the West continues. Both teams have already seized postseason bids, but if the Riders win this one, they will clinch a home playoff game. Saskatchewan is on a two-game win streak, while the Lions have lost two straight games. The Roughriders got a big outing from running back Kory Sheets last week – 106 yards rushing – and they appear to be returning to the roaring form that had them off to such a stellar start to the season. Sheets was big when these foes met two weeks ago, and Saskatchewan came out on top.
The pick: Saskatchewan
Hamilton Tiger-Cats (8-7) at Montreal Alouettes (6-9)
Sunday, 1 p.m. (EDT)
The Ticats seem to be on a roll, finally showing they can string together consecutive wins. They sit one game behind the Argos with a shot at the East title. A victory would earn the Ticats a home playoff game at their cozy, but loud, temporary home at the University of Guelph. QB Henry Burris has been sharp and RB C.J. Gable has been a threat both on the ground and through the air, while the defence has been creating timely turnovers. The Alouettes need a win to clinch a playoff spot and will start former Ohio State University star Troy Smith at quarterback.
The pick: Hamilton