Second place in the East Division will be on the line on Labour Day in CFL betting action, as the Hamilton Tiger-Cats play host to the Montreal Alouettes.
This is a crucial game for the Alouettes if they hope to close this two game gap in the East Division that the Winnipeg Blue Bombers have built up. Winnipeg has a tough duel on Friday night against the Saskatchewan Roughriders, but it is still favored by a few points in that affair. Reasonably, we still know that there are three meetings between Winnipeg and Montreal to be played, but a loss in this one would leave the Alouettes needing all three of those games in all likelihood just to tie up the Bombers in the East Division. On top of that, a loss would drop the Alouettes into third place in the division behind Hamilton. QB Anthony Calvillo is definitely back in fine form, and he proved it last week by throwing for nearly 400 yards and three scores against the Calgary Stampeders on the road. Unfortunately, a 10-1 lead was squandered in the second half, and Montreal ended up dropping 38-31 in spite of a feverish attempt at a last second TD to tie the game. The defense is going to need to be significantly better than it was last week, allowing QB Henry Burris to account for almost 450 total yards of offense and four scores.
Meanwhile, Hamilton has been hoping to become a legitimate Grey Cup contender once again for years, and it has been falling short year after year. This might be the last chance that the team has of capitalizing on a golden opportunity. There is a big difference between being a 4-5 team, two games behind second place in the East and being in front of Montreal by virtue of a season tiebreaker. QB Kevin Glenn is coming off of his best game of the year, as he threw for 351 yards and two scores against the Blue Bombers in last week's loss. Unfortunately though, it marked the third straight game in which the team allowed at least 30 points, and the fifth straight in which it allowed at last 26 points. Now, the most feared offense in the league is coming to town, and though this unit did okay at somewhat managing Calvillo and the Alouettes, we have to believe that they will have to be held below that 26 points that they scored five weeks ago for the hosts to win this clash.
This is a tough call. Calvillo clearly wasn't himself the first time around when these two teams met after his eye injury, but this time, he is clearly fine. Still, playing in Hamilton has been tough over the past few years for the Alouettes, and we tend to think that they fold under pressure once again this week.
Free CFL Pick: Hamilton Tiger-Cats +2.5 @ Bookmaker Sportsbook