CFL Picks: Edmonton Eskimos at Saskatchewan Roughriders Odds
by Dave Schwab - 7/1/2011
The Edmonton Eskimos and the Saskatchewan Roughriders renew their West Division rivalry in their 2011 CFL regular season opener this Sunday night. Kick off from Mosaic Stadium in Regina, SK is set for 7 p.m. (EST).
Edmonton won three of its final four games last season, but it was a case of too little too late as it finished last in the West and missed the playoffs with an overall record of 7-11 both straight-up and against the spread. It was the first time the Eskimos failed to qualify for the postseason since 2007. They split their four games with the Roughriders in 2010, winning both at home but losing on the road, 24-20, in Week 3 as a 7.5-point underdog and dropping a 31-23 decision the final week of the year as a one-point favorite. The total stayed 'under' the 58-point line in Game 1, but went 'over' the 51.5-point line the second time around.
If the Eskimos are going to have any chance to start the 2011 season on a winning note they will need to gel quickly as a team since only eight starters from last year's roster will suit up for this game. Quarterback Ricky Ray is one of the eight, but he will counting on a number of new faces up front to provide the time to throw the ball. His primary target will still be Fred Stamps, but look for newcomers Chris Bauman and Adarius Bowman to factor heavily in this game as well.
Saskatchewan comes into this season with the exact same goal as the last two; to actually win a Grey Cup. The Roughriders have fallen just short with two back-to-back losses to Montreal in the championship game by a combined four points. They finished second in the West last year with a 10-8 record SU and were 9-9 ATS, but knocked-off Calgary, 20-16, as a 7.5-point road underdog in the division finals to earn their second straight Grey Cup berth.
Heading in this game, Saskatchewan already has some injuries concerns with kicker Luca Congi on the nine-game injured reserve and defensive standout Brent Hawkins along with wide receiver Rob Bagg out as well. Fortunately quarterback Darian Durant is healthy and ready to continue his aerial assault after leading the CFL in 2010 with 5,542 passing yards and 25 touchdown throws. The loss of Andy Fantuz, who led the CFL last season with 87 receptions for 1,380 yards, dealt a major blow to his receiving corps, but the Roughriders still have a solid running game behind Wes Cates. Nonetheless, they should still be able to move the ball against an Edmonton defense that was ranked last in the league in just about every major category in 2010.
Edmonton Eskimos at Saskatchewan Roughriders Odds and Line Movement
The game opened with the Roughriders favored by 7.5 points with an ‘over/under’ set at 54. The line has moved slightly in the Eskimos favor and currently BetOnline Sportsbook has Saskatchewan favored by 6.5 points with a total line of 52.
Eskimos at Roughriders Betting Trends
The Eskimos are 5-2 straight up in their last seven games overall. They are 2-8 SU in their last 10 games on the road and 2-6 ATS in their last eight games on the road. The total has gone ‘over’ in four of their last six games overall.
The Roughriders are 12-2 SU in their last 14 home games, but just 2-4 ATS in their last six at home. The total has gone ‘over’ in four of their last five home games.
Head-to-head, Saskatchewan is 11-3 SU in the last 14 games played at Mosaic Stadium, but the series is tied 3-3 ATS in the last six there. The total has gone ‘over’ in nine of the last 11 meetings at Saskatchewan.
CFL Picks: Eskimos at Roughriders Predictions
This series has been close over the past two seasons, with Edmonton actually holding a 4-3 SU edge overall. However, given the huge turnover of this team from last year, I’ll stick with the stability and home field advantage of the Roughriders to carry them to a win on Sunday night that covers the 6.5 points.
Indian Cowboy will be offering free CFL picks all season long for FREE. He will release his picks on his daily video on his Insider’s page and you can see his picks for CFL Week 1 action by clicking HERE.
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