The 2012 CFL regular season kicks-off tomorrow night with the Ti-Cats hosting the Roughriders. Before tomorrow make sure you read through our season preview where we’ve shared the pertinent information about each team. Below are the latest odds for the week 1 match-ups along with our best bets for each of the four games.
2012 CFL Week 1 Preview & Picks
- Saskatchewan Roughriders +7 vs. Hamilton Tiger-Cats -7
The point spread opened at -5.5 in favour of the Ti-Cats earlier in the week, but they’ve been bet up to -7 now. Hamilton appears on paper to be the best team in the East Division this season. They made upgrades to their offence (Burris, Fantuz, etc), but the defence took a hit this off-season in Hamilton and they were already amongst the worst in 2011.
Saskatchewan doesn’t appear to be improved this season and they were dreadful last year. The total has also been going up this week, but you can still bet O49.5 points. I think the value in this game is with the O49.5 now that the Ti-Cats are -7 point favs. I’m a bit worried that the Roughriders will struggle to score, but if they can’t score 24+ against the Ti-Cats they’re in trouble.
- Winnipeg Blue Bombers +8 vs. B.C. Lions -8
The point spread in this game opened up at -7 and can still be bet at -7 to -8 depending upon where you look. Winnipeg +8 looks to be the best bet in this match-up, as the Blue Bombers had a great defence last season. I expect the Lions to win the West this season again, but they’re known to get off to slow starts and trying to cover an -8 point spread in week 1 won’t be easy.
Winnipeg will look mostly the same at key positions except for RB, as Reid was let go during the off-season. The Bombers were a poor offensive team last season, but they should have more consistency this year. During preseason the Blue Bombers looked great in their 1st game beating the Als 22-10 and they followed that up with a close lose to the Ti-Cats (26-25).
- Toronto Argonauts PK vs. Edmonton Eskimos PK
Edmonton opened as a -2 point favourite at home, but the game has been bet down to a PK at most bookies. Toronto is going to be featuring a rejuvenated offence that should be able to score lots of points. QB’s Ricky Ray and Steven Jyles will get to try and beat their old teams in week 1. Ricky Ray is the much better QB and Toronto has more depth on offence this season.
The Eskimos will rely on Jyles to find Stamps, but if you double team Stamps you should shutdown their offence. I still think there is value betting on Toronto straight-up in week 1 with Ricky Ray looking to prove a point. The O/U is only 48.5 points for this game (Lowest this week) and I think the game will go over the total, as both defences leave a lot to be desired.
- Montreal Alouettes +2.5 vs. Calgary Stampeders -2.5
The point spread for this game has remained steady for the most part although some shops have pushed the spread to -3 points in favour of the Stampeders at home. This game is tough to predict because the Alouettes have some question marks. Montreal needs to improve on defence and nobody knows if the Als will be able to have the same type of offensive output in 2012.
I’m really torn on this game and in my opinion the best bet is to take the +3 on the Alouettes. Montreal wasn’t a great road team last season, but this game is on Canada’s Day and it’s a huge game in the CFL. Expect both teams to show up and the best bet is on the O54 points. Montreal can score points in bunches and Calgary will need to keep up to remain close.