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Loaded Stamps Favored To Win Grey Cup

Despite falling just short of winning the big one last season, the Calgary Stampeders find themselves as the favorites (+350) to win the 105th Grey Cup. It’s easy to see why, as the Stamps return the bulk of an offense that dominated the CFL and paced the league in total points and time of possession while allowing the fewest sacks and turnovers.

Star quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell was near unstoppable at times last season but did have his worst game of the year in the Grey Cup final against the Ottawa Redblacks. Aside from a deadly passing attack, the Stampeders had the best running back in the CFL with Jerome Messam leading the league in rushing yards and touchdowns.

Not only do odds suggest the Stampeders are the most likely Grey Cup winner, so too does Prediction Machine. After generating the upcoming CFL season 50,000 times, Prediction Machine has given the Stamps a 21.3 win probability percentage, which is easily the highest in the league.

The second-best odds belong to the B.C. Lions (+500), who were the defensive juggernaut of the CFL in 2016. However, defensive coordinator Mark Washington will need to replace nearly half of his defense after a mass exodus of players during the offseason. The offense should still be in good hands with diminutive quarterback Jonathon Jennings and receivers Emmanuel Arceneaux and Bryan Burnham returning.

Of course, the top of the oddsboards belong to the Western Division with the league showing little in terms of parity last season. Four of the five West teams finished the last regular season with at least 10 wins while no team in the East had a winning record.

The top two teams in the East last season, the Redblacks and Hamilton Tiger-Cats, enter the season with the best odds to win the Grey Cup from that division.

Of course, the Redblacks rode a red-hot Henry Burris to the Grey Cup last season but will now need to move on from the legendary quarterback. Drew Tate was acquired in the hopes he would be the QB but he ended up getting injured in the first preseason game, which leaves plenty of question marks.

The Ticats managed to finish second in an abysmal East last season, despite going 4-9 in their final 13 games. Having a full season of a healthy Zach Collaros should mean improvements on offense but it won’t do much if the Ticats don’t improve on a CFL-worst rushing attack.

2017 Grey Cup Odds
TeamOdds
Calgary Stampeders+350
B.C. Lions+500
Edmonton Eskimos+550
Hamilton Tiger-Cats+700
Ottawa Redblacks+700
Montreal Alouettes+750
Winnipeg Blue Bombers+800
Saskatchewan Roughriders+800
Toronto Argonauts+1200

Odds as of June 12 at Bovada

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The 104th Grey Cup will take place at BMO Field in Toronto when the Calgary Stampeders and Ottawa Redblacks collide Sunday.

These two teams have taken very different roads to the finals. The Stamps had a historically good year and finished the regular season 15-2-1. Calgary then easily dismantled the BC Lions 42-15 in the Western final and now looks for its second Grey Cup in three years.

The Redblacks limped into the postseason with an 8-9-1 record, which was good enough to win the terrible Eastern Division. Winning the division gave the Redblacks a first-round bye, and they then survived a late scare from the Edmonton Eskimos to make their second consecutive trip to the finals.

Calgary’s offense has been unstoppable so far this season. The Stampeders finished the season sitting first in total points and time of possession while allowing the fewest sacks and turnovers. The biggest reason for that was quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell, who led the CFL in touchdown passes while finishing second in passing yards. Mitchell has thrown for at least two touchdowns in 13 of 18 games (including playoffs) while only throwing more than one interception once.

Ottawa was a pass-first offense, but it has more to do with a deadly receiving group than the quarterback play. Greg Ellingson, Chris Williams and Ernest Jackson finished the season fifth through seventh in receiving yards respectively while Williams and Jackson tied for the second-most touchdown catches. Ottawa will be without Williams, though, as the wide receiver was ruled out for the season with an injury. Throwing the ball for Ottawa will be veteran quarterback Henry Burris, who has fared much better since returning from injury in Week 16.

The Stamps and Redblacks have met twice this season with the teams tying in Week 3 and Calgary winning 48-23 in Week 13. Mitchell was the star player in those outings, as the Calgary field general completed 67 percent of his passes for 729 yards with four touchdowns and one interception. It is also interesting to note that Burris did not play in either of those games for the Redblacks.

2016 Grey Cup Odds
TeamSpreadTotal
Calgary Stampeders-9.5 (-110)OVER 54.5 (-110)
Ottawa Redblacks+9.5 (-110)UNDER 54.5 (-110)

Odds as of Nov 25 at Bovada

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After two dramatic games this past weekend, the CFL division finals have been set as the Edmonton Eskimos will take on the Ottawa Redblacks and the B.C. Lions will travel to take on the Calgary Stampeders.

The Stamps remain massive odds-on favorites after going a perfect 9-0 at home through the regular season. The Lions handed the Stampeders one of their two regular season losses, but that came in the regular season opener for both squads. Calgary took the next two against B.C. with Bo Levi Mitchell completing 69.5 percent of his passes while throwing for five touchdowns and one interception.

The Lions enter the West final riding a four-game winning streak that has seen running back Jeremiah Johnson take over the offense. Johnson has rushed for 359 yards while averaging 6.9 yards per carry.

The Redblacks were rewarded with a first-round bye and home-field advantage in the East final thanks to winning the terrible East Division, but that may actually be to their detriment. The Redblacks are 2-6-1 in Ottawa this season and have only one win in their past six games at TD Place Stadium.

The Eskies may lean heavily on John White if the East semis are any indication, as the running back rushed for 160 yards and two touchdowns. In White’s past five games – he missed Edmonton’s regular season finale – he has accounted for 617 rushing yards and seven touchdowns.

2016 Grey Cup Odds
TeamOdds
Calgary Stampeders-150
B.C. Lions+500
Ottawa Redblacks+500
Edmonton Eskimos+500

Odds as of Nov 14 at Bovada

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The playoffs are officially here and after a dominant regular season, the Calgary Stampeders are massive favorites to hoist the Grey Cup. The Stamps ended the regular season with a 15-2-1 mark and 31 points, which was seven points more than any other team in the league.

To make matters worse for whomever the Stampeders face in the West Division final, Bo Levi Mitchell and company are 9-0 at home while outscoring opponents by an average of 13.4 points per game in those outings. All things considered, it makes sense that Calgary enters the postseason as a -149 favorite per Sports Interaction.

The B.C. Lions, who enter the playoffs riding a three-game winning streak, have the second-best odds at +600. During the past three games, slotback Emmanuel Arceneaux has been dominant with 380 yards and five touchdowns. However, the Lions are facing the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, a team they have not beaten this season, in the West semifinals.

The Ottawa Redblacks managed to win the awful East Division with an 8-9-1 regular season record. They sit third on the oddsboard at +700 thanks to securing a first-round bye due to their divisional crown. However, hosting a game may be counterproductive for the Redblacks, as the team is 2-6-1 at home this season compared with 6-3 on the road.

2016 Grey Cup Odds
TeamOdds
Calgary Stampeders-149
B.C. Lions+600
Ottawa Redblacks+700
Edmonton Eskimos+800
Winnipeg Blue Bombers+900
Hamilton Tiger-Cats+1600

Odds as of Nov 7 at Sports Interaction

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The 2016 CFL season gets underway this week and it’s the defending Grey Cup champion Edmonton Eskimos that oddsmakers have tabbed as favorites, slightly ahead of the Calgary Stampeders.

Online sportsbook Bovada has the Eskimos at +400, with the Stampeders at +450. The teams finished the 2015 regular season with identical 14-4 records — both going 8-1 at home and 6-3 on the road. Calgary won the first of four meetings between the clubs in 2015, but went on to lose three straight to the Eskimos, including in the division finals.

Over in the east division, the Hamilton Tiger-Cats have the best odds at +500.  Last year’s Grey Cup runner-up, the Ottawa Redblacks, come in at +700.

Despite a league worst 3-15 record in 2015, the Saskatchewan Roughriders’ odds to win the Grey Cup are +800, putting them ahead of three other teams. The Riders will be led by four-time all-star, offensive guard Brendon LaBatte — the team’s lone all-star selection last season.

2016 Grey Cup Odds
TeamOdds
Edmonton Eskimos+400
Calgary Stampeders+450
Hamilton Tiger-Cats+500
Toronto Argonauts+600
Ottawa Redblacks+700
Saskatchewan Roughriders+800
B.C. Lions+900
Winnipeg Blue Bombers+1000
Montreal Alouettes+1200

Odds as of June 20, 2016 at Bovada

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The Saskatchewan Roughriders certainly made a big splash in the CFL Draft despite entering the night with the fewest picks in the league.  The Roughriders spent the first overall pick on OT Josiah St. John who spent his past two seasons playing for the Oklahoma Sooners. St. John was also the top ranked player in the CFL Draft that was not selected or signed by a NFL team.

The Riders also took the No.1 overall prospect in the draft by selecting Manitoba’s David Onyemata in the fourth round. Rider Nation will need to be patient on Onyemata, as the New Orleans Saints selected the DL in the fourth round of the NFL Draft.

The Hamilton Tiger Cats also made a big move up from fifth to third overall to select OL Brandon Revenberg. The Grand Valley State alum was too small for NFL teams to look at him, but his extreme versatility along the offensive line could prove to be vital to the No.1 ranked scoring offense last season.

2016 Grey Cup Odds
TeamOdds
Edmonton Eskimos+400
Calgary Stampeders+450
Hamilton Tiger-Cats+500
Toronto Argonauts+600
Ottawa Redblacks+700
Saskatchewan Roughriders+800
B.C. Lions+900
Winnipeg Blue Bombers+1000
Montreal Alouettes+1200

Odds as of May 11, 2016 at Bovada

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CFL players have already hit the fields for mini-camps and the annual draft is quickly approaching. After spending much of the offseason listed as the second overall prospect in the draft, the scouting bureau has tabbed Manitoba defensive lineman David Onyemata as the best player entering the CFL this season. Onyemata possesses elite athleticism for a 300 pounder and could immediately make an impact for the Saskatchewan Roughriders, who pick first in the draft.

Most teams have seen their 2016 Grey Cup futures lines shift in a positive direction, that is, except Edmonton Eskimos and Calgary Stampeders.

Though there has been some roster turnover for Edmonton, a season of a fully healthy Mike Reilly will almost certainly mean another trip to the playoffs. The team also added receiving threat Chris Getzlaf to their roster, who could be a steal if he can remain healthy.

Like the Eskimos, the Stampeders have seen little in the way of roster turnover during the offseason. Arguably the best quarterback in the CFL, Bo Levi Mitchell, will be back under center and the team should see a full season of play out of last years first round pick Karl Lavoie on the offensive line.

2016 Grey Cup Odds
TeamOdds
Edmonton Eskimos+400
Calgary Stampeders+450
Hamilton Tiger-Cats+500
Toronto Argonauts+600
Ottawa Redblacks+700
Saskatchewan Roughriders+800
B.C. Lions+900
Winnipeg Blue Bombers+1000
Montreal Alouettes+1200

Odds as of April 28, 2016 at Bovada

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With the memory of the Edmonton Eskimos hoisting the Grey Cup still fresh in our minds, now is a good time to look towards next year’s Grey Cup. With the Eskies coming off a 14-4 regular season and a Grey Cup victory, they are opening as +250 favorites to win it all again at Bovada.

Close behind the Eskies are their provincial rivals, with the Calgary Stampeders also posting a 14-4 regular season record last year. The Stamps were thoroughly beaten down against the Eskimos in the Western Finals before a late-game surge made the score look more respectable.

The East, which was far more competitive than the West last season, seems like it may be a dogfight once again with the Ottawa Redblacks, Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Toronto Argonauts all listed at +700.

One of the more interesting teams to watch will be the Saskatchewan Roughriders who finished 3-15 last season after their team was decimated by injuries. Books have given them a little more respect than their record from last season indicated, as they have better odds to win the big game in Toronto than two other teams.

2016 Grey Cup Odds
TeamOdds
Edmonton Eskimos+250
Calgary Stampeders+350
Hamilton Tiger-Cats+700
Ottawa Redblacks+700
Toronto Argonauts+700
B.C. Lions+900
Saskatchewan Roughriders+1000
Winnipeg Blue Bombers+1200
Montreal Alouettes+1400

Odds as of December 1, 2015 at Bovada

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