Hamilton Looks To Maintain Its Winning Ways Without Its Starting Quarterback

Hamilton Tiger-Cats at Saskatchewan Roughriders

Free Pick: Hamilton +2.5

Recommended Sportsbook: 5Dimes

Hamilton’s huge 23-15 upset against previously unbeaten Winnipeg last Friday as a two-point home underdog proved to be costly. Starting quarterback Jeremiah Masoli was lost for the season with a knee injury. Sitting at 5-1 both straight-up and against the spread following that win, the Tiger-Cats will now have to forge on as the top team in the East.

Last Thursday’s win was the first time this season that Hamilton closed as an underdog. Its worst loss of the season came against Montreal in a 36-29 setback as a 13.5-point favorite on the road. The Tiger-Cats opened the season with a 23-17 victory at home against Saskatchewan to cover as five-point favorites. The total stayed UNDER 48.5 points in that game and it has stayed UNDER in four of their first six games.

With Masoli on the shelf, Hamilton turned to Dane Evans at quarterback against the Blue Bombers. He completed 13-of-25 passing attempts for 94 yards with one interception. Credit the Tiger-Cats’ defense for keeping one of the CFL’s most potent offensive attacks in check for most of the night. This unit is holding opposing teams to just 19.2 points per game. Hamilton added quarterback David Watford to the roster earlier this week.

Saskatchewan improved to an even 3-3 SU with last Saturday’s 45-18 victory against British Columbia in a game that closed as a PICK. The Roughriders improved to 4-2 ATS with the total going OVER in three of their last five games. They are 2-1 SU and ATS at home this season with the total staying UNDER in two of those three games.

Give credit to Saskatchewan for completing the two-game sweep against BC both SU and ATS. However, a trio of losses to the better teams they have faced this season leaves the Roughriders a bit overrated in my book. Their offense is averaging 30.5 points per game with Cody Fajardo at quarterback, but he has tossed four interceptions to go with his seven touchdown throws in six games. The defense gave up 44 points in an earlier loss to Ottawa and 37 points in a more recent loss to Calgary.

Head-to-Head Betting Trends

–The Roughriders have won five of the last six meetings both SU and ATS. The total has stayed UNDER in four of the last five meetings in Saskatchewan.

Free Betting Pick

My three-game winning streak to start the season has eroded to a losing record with four losses in a row. In an effort to redeem myself, I am going with Hamilton as a road underdog. The Tiger-Cats will be looking to prove that they are still the team to beat in the East with a backup quarterback at the helm

CFL ‘Best Bet’ Record: 3-4

Other CFL Week 8 Games:

Thursday, Aug. 1

Winnipeg (-14) at Toronto Total Line: 48.5 (7 p.m.)

Covering a two-touchdown spread on the road is a tall task, but Toronto has shown zero signs of being evenly slightly competitive in its 0-6 start.

Friday, Aug. 2

Ottawa at Montreal (-7.5) Total Line: 53 (7 p.m.)

Ottawa is mired in a SU four-game losing streak and Montreal continues to prove that it is for real with three-straight upsets. I am actually going with the UNDER on 53 points as my top play.

Saturday, Aug. 3

Edmonton (-1) at Calgary Total Line: 47.5 (7 p.m.)

Calgary continues to find ways to win games without its starting quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell in the lineup. The Stampeders are a costly 1-5 ATS, but getting a point at home makes them my pick for Saturday night.