Winnipeg Blue Bombers @ Calgary Stampeders
The Blue Bombers also have a very simple equation: Beat Calgary and they finish first in the East. If the Bombers lose and Montreal beats BC, however, then the Alouettes take the division title.
Calgary is coming off a thrilling 32-27 win at Montreal last week that saw former backup quarterback Drew Tate burn the Alouette defence for 333 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Tate was also picked off twice, however, and knows that at the drop of a hat he could lose his spot to defending league MOP Henry Burris.
The Bombers suffered one of the most shocking losses of the season last week, going down to the Argonauts for the second-straight time. They got away with one, however, with the Als also losing, and giving them another chance to clinch first with a win.
Montreal Alouettes @ BC Lions
It’s no secret that BC Place has not been kind to the Alouettes over the last decade. The Als are 1-9 in B.C since 2001, with their lone win coming last year. The Lions have outscored Montreal 328-223 over that span.
Almost all of those games have come early in the season and have never really had playoff implications, making this Saturday’s encounter very different.
For starters, it’s both teams’ season-finales. For B.C., it’s a win-and-finish-first scenario. For Montreal, it’s the same deal should the Blue Bombers lose the early game on Saturday at Calgary.
You can be sure the Alouettes will be watching the Stampeders-Blue Bombers game closely, and if Winnipeg pulls out a win, there could be a letdown for the Als, knowing they can’t do better than second place.
Hamilton Tiger-Cats @ Toronto Argonauts
In the only game with no playoff implications this week, the Tiger-Cats will be looking to salvage another 9-9 season with a season-ending win in Toronto. Win or lose, the Ticats are headed off to Montreal or Winnipeg for the Eastern Semi-Final on Nov. 13, while the Argos are headed into a long off-season of internal analysis.
The Argos, who showed a ton of promise heading into the 2011 campaign but won just five games heading into Week 19 will be seeking to end the season with a statement win over their provincial rivals.
The Tiger-Cats are simply looking to gain a little momentum after a disappointing 19-3 loss at Saskatchewan last week.
Saskatchewan Roughriders @ Edmonton Eskimos
The Eskimos will kick off the excitement on Friday night as they host the fourth-place Roughriders.
Edmonton is coming off a 29-20 loss in Vancouver in which B.C. pivot Travis Lulay had the upper hand on Ricky Ray despite an excellent game by both starting quarterbacks.
Ray completed 26 passes for 310 yards and a pair of touchdowns, while Lulay was good for 322 yards and three majors on 21 completions. He was named Gibson’s Finest Offensive Player of the Week for his efforts.
Ray has hit his stride of late after a rough patch in the middle of the season. He has thrown six TD passes over his last three games and has eclipsed the 300-yards passing mark in each of his last two outings.
Even more important, perhaps, is the fact that he has thrown just two interceptions over his last five games.
Ray will be facing a Roughriders team that will be looking to make a statement in its season finale. The Riders will be extra motivated to get a win for the coach, Ken Miller, who has announced he’ll step down following the game.
Miller has been intimately involved in every aspect of the Roughriders’ success since their 2007 Grey Cup win and is highly-respected across the CFL and in particular in the Saskatchewan dressing room.
Suffice to say, the Riders won’t be rolling over for Edmonton on Friday night.