CFL Countdown

STEVE COAD -- London Free Press

, Last Updated: 8:32 AM ET

SASKATCHEWAN (8-8) AT TORONTO (10-6)

The skinny: Tonight, 7:30 p.m. (TSN). While the Roughriders already know their regular season fate -- a third-place finish in the West and a division semifinal in Calgary -- the Argonauts are still fighting for first in the East. The Argos are 8-1 since their injury-dogged 2-5 start and, despite struggling for consistency, are picking up steam. Needless to say, I'm feeling better about picking them in the preseason to snatch the Grey Cup. Sure, Toronto's run defence is iffy, but its pass D in divine. The Damon Allen-led offence is finally hitting the heights expected of it. The banged-up Roughriders need to collide with another tough defence like they need a hole in the head. They need time to heal, a luxury they don't have. Former Mustang star and 'Rider rookie Andy Fantuz has 21 catches for 265 yards -- 12.6 yards a snag -- this season. He's involved and getting better.

Cody's call: Argos 27-21

EDMONTON (5-11) AT MONTREAL (9-7)

The skinny: Tomorrow, 3 p.m. (CBC). The Eskimos, the defending Grey Cup champs, are done, destined to miss the playoffs for the first time in 35 years. Their reliance on the pass (a temptation hard to resist when Ricky Ray is your quarterback) at the expense of a balanced offence did them in. Heads will roll in the offseason; next season, expect to see a revamped offensive line. Also count on spectacular running back Troy Davis getting the football a lot more. The Als are coming off a 27-26 loss to the Roughriders last Friday night, but they've won two of their last three and have a shot at overtaking the Argos for first place in the East. This game is huge for the Als, in terms of catching the Argos and staying ahead of third-place Winnipeg.

Cody's call: Alouettes 30-23

CALGARY (10-7) AT WINNIPEG (8-8)

The skinny: Tomorrow, 7 p.m. (TSN). The Stampeders have clinched second in the West and are waiting to host Saskatchewan in the semifinals. The Blue Bombers have their wide eyes on second place in the East, but need to win out, plus have either Montreal (most likely) or Toronto (not likely at all) falter, to achieve it. Second is probably pie in the sky, but the Bombers are in the playoffs in any case and the worst that can happen is they'll hit the road for the playoffs. Actually, that might be a good thing for the Bombers, who are 3-5 at home this season and 5-3 on the road. The Stampeders defeated West-winning B.C. 35-32 last week, giving themselves a shot of confidence after being devoured by the Lions 39-13 the previous week. This matchup will go a long way toward deciding the CFL rushing championship. Joffrey Reynolds of the Stamps is the current leader with 1,467 yards through 17 games. The Bombers' Charles Roberts has gained 1,406 yards with two tilts pending.

Cody's call: Blue Bombers 24-23

HAMILTON (4-13) AT B.C. (11-5)

The skinny: Tomorrow, 10 p.m. (TSN). Worst versus first, the Tiger-Cats, of course, being the former. If you're thankful for small blessings, the Ticats' season is over after this one. Misery doesn't begin to describe what the Tabbies have put their fans and themselves through. The Lions, on the other hand, are solid Grey Cup contenders and the cream of offences in an offence- oriented league. Wide receiver Geroy Simon is the centrepiece of the Lions' attack, having already caught a league-high 97 passes for 1,736 yards and 14 touchdowns. Wideout Ryan Thelwell of London has 560 yards and three TDs on 48 catches. The only thing the Lions need is to get their top two quarterbacks, Dave Dickenson and Buck Pierce, healthy. The West final is not till Nov. 12, so they have time to heal.

Cody's call: Lions 24-10

SEASON RECORD

Last week: 1-3; overall: 36-29


Videos

Photos