CFL 109th Grey Cup Playoffs: Preview & Predictions

For the first time in three years, the Canadian Football League was able to hold a standard 18-game regular season schedule.


The 2020 season was scrapped entirely because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The league resumed operations last year, but the pandemic caused the league to settle on a 14-game regular season schedule.


Things went back to normal in 2022. All nine teams completed 18 regular season games, and the six-team playoff field has been set. The 109th Grey Cup will be held at Mosaic Stadium in Regina, Saskatchewan on Nov. 20.


The surprising BC Lions will host the Calgary Stampeders in the West Division Semi-Finals, with the winner visiting the defending Grey Cup champion Winnipeg Blue Bombers in the Division Finals. The Hamilton Tiger-Cats will visit the Montreal Alouettes in the East Division Semis, with the winner visiting the top-seeded Toronto Argonauts a week later.


The CFL is one of several professional sports leagues that customers in Canada’s most populated province can bet on through Ontario betting apps. The defending champion Blue Bombers have the best odds of winning the 109th Grey Cup at DraftKings (+120), with the Argonauts right beind them at (+400).


Among the six playoff teams, Hamilton has the lowest Grey Cup odds at +1200. Having last won it all in 1999, the Tiger-Cats have the longest active Grey Cup championship drought.


Division Semi-Finals Matchups & Predictions


(2) Montreal Alouettes vs. (3) Hamilton Tiger-Cats


The 2022 Alouettes enjoyed an unlikely second-half surge that was enough to lock down the No. 2 seed in the East Division.


Montreal fired head coach Khari Jones after losing three of their first four games. GM Danny Maciocia, who previously coached Edmontom from 2005 to 2008, was named the interim head coach.


The Alouettes rallied under their new head coach, going 8-6 following the change en route to a 9-9 finish. Maciocia led Edmonton to victory at the 93rd Grey Cup over Montreal, and now he fittingly gets the chance to secure a second championship as a head coach with the Alouettes.


Hamilton lost their first four games of 2022 and eventually found themselves at 3-9 through 12 games. But they closed out the season on a 6-1 run to finish 8-10, which was good enough for the final playoff spot in the East.


Montreal won both home games against Hamilton in the regular season, while the Tiger-Cats bested the Alouettes at Tim Hortons Field back on July 28.


This game feels like a bit of a toss-up, since both teams finished the regular season on a high note. But the Alouettes have home advantage, which obviously mattered when these two teams met in the regular season. Also, it’s hard to bet against the red-hot Trevor Harris.


Prediction: Alouettes 37, Tiger-Cats 25


(2) BC Lions vs. (3) Calgary Stampeders


The Lions were the biggest surprise of the 2022 regular season, finishing 12-6 to guarantee the franchise its first home playoff game since 2016.


Victoria, British Columbia native Nathan Rourke was the ultimate feel-good story of 2022, leading his provincial team by tossing 3,349 passing yards and 25 touchdowns against 10 interceptions in 10 games. Rourke also contributed 304 yards on the ground to go along with seven rushing scores.


Rourke suffered a foot injury (which required surgery) on Aug. 20 and missed the next two months, returning for brief action in the regular season finale against Winnipeg. Vernon Adams, acquired via trade with Montreal, did more than enough to keep the Lions afloat during Rourke’s absence.


The always-competitive Stampeders are led by 25-year-old quarterback Jake Maier, running back Ka’Deem Carey (1,088 rushing yards) and the dynamic receiving duo of Malik Henry (1,023 receiving yards) and Reggie Begelton (957 receiving yards).


BC went 2-1 against Calgary in the regular season, with the road team winning on each occasion. But a healthy, motivated Rourke and a thunderous crowd at BC Place will be too much for the visitors to overcome.


Prediction: Lions 29, Stampeders 27


Grey Cup Prediction: Blue Bombers Three-Peat By Defeating Argonauts


The Argonauts and Blue Bombers will take care of business at home in the Division Finals by outlasting Montreal and BC, respectively.


The Blue Bombers will be the big favorites here, being the defending champs and the owners of the league’s best record. The 15-3 club was in their own class during the regular season, and that shouldn’t change here.


They fielded the CFL’s second-best offense (538 points) and the league’s best scoring defense by a considerable margin (370 points allowed). Toronto just won’t have the depth to keep up with Winnipeg’s prolific offense led by Zach Collaros, Dalton Schoen and Brady Oliveira.


It all adds up to another championship for the Blue Bombers, who will defeat Toronto 35-20 at Mosaic Stadium to complete the three-peat.

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