The Montreal Alouettes won both of their games recently against the Ottawa Redblacks in a back-to-back home and home series. They travel now to take on the Edmonton Elks.
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Date/Location: Saturday, October 14 /Commonwealth Stadium, Edmonton, AB
Kickoff Time: 4 PM ET, 1 AM PT
Channel: TSN (Canada), CFL+ (USA, International)
Spread: Montreal -2.5 (-110), Edmonton +2.5 (-110)
Moneyline: Montreal -140, Edmonton +120
Over/Under: 47.5 (Over -110, Under -110)
Montreal Alouettes (9-7): The Montreal Alouettes can clinch home-field advantage in the East Division Semi-Finals with a win this weekend. The Alouettes are 9-0 against teams that are not the BC Lions, Winnipeg Blue Bombers, or Toronto Argonauts. So far this season the Alouettes have the 4th highest overall team grades from Pro Football Focus in offense and defense.
Edmonton Elks (4-12): The Edmonton Elks are coming off a tough loss to the Toronto Argonauts losing 12-35 eliminating them from playoff contention. The Elks still have their pride to play for and it will be important to them to play hard for their final home game of the season. It was recently announced that Commonwealth will not have it’s upper deck open next season due to their attendance issues.
Alouettes Keys to the Game
For most of the season, Montreal has allowed the most sacks in the league. Last week the Alouettes allowed only 1 sack while generating 5 sacks against Ottawa. After last week Montreal has now allowed the 2nd most sacks with Ottawa now having allowed more than them. Montreal also had a high pass-blocking grade from PFF last week. It seems Montreal is trending in the right direction in this area.
The Elks have had a good pass rush this season and the Elks have 2 players tied for third in sacks in the league at 11 in Jake Ceresna and AC Leonard.
Pound the Rock
Montreal did not have the ideal result on the ground as Walter Fletcher rushed 14 times for 43 yards (3.1 average). Edmonton has struggled often against the run this season so this is a great opportunity for Montreal to get the ground game going. Montreal this season has been better offensively when they are running the ball. At times they have abandoned the run earlier in the season and experienced issues in pass protection.
Build last Week’s Run Stopping
Montreal has done well in their last 2 games against Ottawa limiting Devonta Williams to 25 yards on 7 carries 2 weeks ago and to 45 yards on 10 carries last week. This week Montreal is presented with a strong challenge in stopping Kevin Brown who is currently tied for first in yards per carry among starting running backs at 6 yards per carry. Kevin Brown has 1,032 yards and 4 touchdowns so far this season.
Contain Tre Ford
Last week Montreal did a great job limiting Dustin Crum who was the league leader in rushing yards among quarterbacks. This week is another challenge in the form of a dual-threat quarterback as Tre Ford has averaged 70 yards rushing per game making him second in the league in rushing yards per game among all players. Montreal’s linebacking group and secondary are fast and tackle hard so Montreal is suited well to counter Tre Ford’s tendencies to gash offenses with his legs.
Another Strong Game From Fajardo
Fajardo posted some good numbers last week completing 28 of his 32 passes for 272 yards and a touchdown with 1 interception. He also rushed 3 times for 27 yards. Fajardo is 5th in the league in passing yards with 3,534 over 14 games. What separates him from some of the top quarterbacks is his touchdown to interception ratio with 12 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. Montreal is going to need Fajardo to play at the high level he is capable of playing at which saw him named to the 2019 CFL All-Star team to make a run for the Grey Cup.
Alouettes to Watch
RB Walter Fletcher
Fletcher rushed 14 times last week for 43 yards and is listed as the starting runningback again this week.
WR Tyler Snead
Snead had 7 receptions last week for 77 yards and had 40 YAC. Snead has 49 receptions for 682 yards and 5 touchdowns over 13 games so far this season.
WR Tyson Philpot
Last week Philpot had 6 receptions for 90 yards and a touchdown. He has 41 receptions for 478 yards this season and 3 touchdowns.
WR Austin Mack
Mack is 4th in receiving yards this season with 73 receptions for 1,097 yards and 4 touchdowns.
DE Shawn Lemon
Lemon had a sack and 4 total pressures last week against Ottawa and had the 5th highest PFF pass-rush grade among defensive linemen.
DT Mustafa Johnson
Mustafa Johnson made the PFF Honor Roll after generating 3 tackles and a sack.
DE Lwal Uguak
Uguak has a sack in each of his last 2 games.
LB Tyrice Beverette
Beverette was the 5th highest-graded linebacker in run defense by PFF. He also had 4 tackles, a sack, a forced fumble, and 2 special teams tackles.
LB Reggie Stubblefield
Stubblefield had 2 tackles, a sack, and a fumble recovery last week.
CB Ciante Evans
Last week Evans had the 5th-highest PFF Coverage Grade and he also led the Als in tackles with 6.
Elks to Watch
QB Tre Ford
In 8 games Ford has completed 68.6% of his passes for 1,565 yards with 10 touchdowns and 6 interceptions. He has also rushed 59 times for 561 yards and 3 touchdowns.
RB Kevin Brown
Brown has rushed 171 yards for 1,032 yards (6 average) and 4 touchdowns.
WR Eugene Lewis
In 10 games Lewis has 34 receptions for 625 yards and 3 touchdowns.
DE Jake Ceresna
Ceresna has 11 sacks, 45 tackles, and a forced fumble in 15 games.
DE AC Leonard
Leonard has 41 tackles, 11 sacks, and 2 forced fumbles in 14 games.
LB Adam Konar
Last week Konar had the 10th highest run defence grade among linebackers from PFF. He has 68 tackles over 16 games.
S Loucheiz Purifoy
Purifoy has 44 tackles, 3 interceptions, 3 passes defended, and 2 touchdowns over 13 games.
I am expecting Montreal’s defense to have a strong performance this weekend. I predict Montreal to win 27-17.
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