The BC Lions and the Toronto Argonauts are jockeying for playoff positioning this year, and the two are going to be faced with a crucial test against one another for the second straight week at Empire Field on Saturday afternoon.
The Cleo Lemon experiment is finally said and done with. The former Miami Dolphins backup (and part-time starter) was supposed to be the savior of this franchise, and he was definitely taking steps in the right direction to help out his cause. However, after last week's dismal first half against the Leos in which he generated six two and outs, Head Coach Jim Barker decided to let him go. However, QB Dalton Bell didn't do much better, turning the ball over five teams, four via interceptions to kill any chance that the team had in the second half. One would like to think that cutting Lemon means that QB Steven Jyles is coming off of the nine game injured list to be the team's starting quarterback this week. Jyles has had cups of tea in a number of CFL cities in his career, mostly as a backup, but it is clear that he is the only man that can get the Argonauts to the playoffs this year. He's mobile and has no hesitation about using his legs quite a bit, something that the Lions really haven't seen a lot of this year.
BC is in better form right now at 3-6, and it is a game up on the final playoff spot in the league. A win parlayed with a Saskatchewan loss on Sunday would put Head Coach Wally Buono's team two games up with eight to play on the field for that last spot, and it would move the squad within two games of the Calgary/Edmonton loser and within a game of the Hamilton/Montreal loser as well. A loss, and any chance of hosting a playoff game at the newly rebuilt BC Place would go down the drain once and probably for all. QB Buck Pierce has played well of late, and he is probably just two weeks away from becoming a 3,000 yard passer if he can stay healthy. Sure, we'd like to see him completing more than 57.1 percent of his passes, but we love the passing yard average of over 270 yards per game, and a 12/7 TD/INT ratio is respectable. The running game should get a boost this week with the return of RB Jamel Robertson, a man who really made a name for himself playing with these Argonauts.
We tend to think that the Argos are going to have something in the tank for this one if Jyles ends up taking snaps. The former Winnipeg Blue Bomber knows what it takes to win games, and though he doesn't have a sparkling history, he can pull off games like this. Giving us eight points is an awful lot for a CFL game, and we plan on taking full advantage of that.
Free CFL Pick: Toronto Argonauts +8 @ Bookmaker Sportsbook