Hamilton Tiger-Cats at Calgary Stampeders (-6, 57)
The Calgary Stampeders are playing their best football of the season, riding a three-game winning streak and tied for the West Division lead after winning back-to-back contests against the rival Edmonton Eskimos. The Stampeders will host the Hamilton Tiger-Cats on Friday at McMahon Stadium, where they are 4-0. Calgary third-string quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell has taken full advantage of the opportunity afforded him by injuries to Drew Tate and Kevin Glenn, completing 70-of-98 passes for 850 yards, with eight touchdowns and only one interception.
Quarterback Henry Burris has the Tiger-Cats on a roll. Hamilton has won four of its last five games after splitting a home-and-home series with the BC Lions and Burris leads the league with 3,181 passing yards - 612 more than any other quarterback. Burris, named offensive player of the week after throwing four touchdown passes against the Lions, is 217 yards away from reaching 50,000 in his career and should have no problem reaching it with a healthy receiving corps that includes wide receivers Greg Ellingson, Bakari Grant and Andy Fantuz
TV: 9 p.m. ET, TSN
LINE: Calgary opened as a 6.5-point favorite and has been bet down to -6. The total has moved from 56 to 57 points.
WEATHER: Temperatures in the low 80s with clear skies and winds blowing NNW as high as 15 mph.
ABOUT THE TIGER-CATS (5-5, 5-5 ATS): Coach Kent Austin praised Hamilton’s defensive effort following its Week 11 victory over BC, when Lions quarterback Travis Lulay was sacked three times and faced pressure all game. “He’s unbelievably tough, so we knew we weren’t going to get a lot of sacks, but we needed to pressure him, hit him, hurry him, and we were able to do that tonight,” Austin said. Linebacker Brandon Isaac and defensive lineman Eric Norwood each recorded their first sacks in the contest, while defensive lineman Brandon Boudreaux leads the team with four.
ABOUT THE STAMPEDERS (8-2, 7-3 ATS): Running back Jon Cornish was named Canadian player of the week for the third time in 2013 after recording 177 yards from scrimmage against the Eskimos. Cornish is second in the league with 940 rushing yards and should eclipse his career-high of 1,457 if he stays healthy. Mitchell took over as Calgary’s starting quarterback for the second time this season after Glenn suffered a knee injury in the Labour Day Classic. Tate remains out indefinitely while continuing to battle inflammation in his elbow.
* Over is 4-1 in the last five meetings in Calgary.
* Over is 4-1 in the last five meetings.
* Stampeders are 6-2 ATS in their last eight games overall.
* Tiger-Cats are 5-0 ATS in their last five games overall.
1. Calgary K Rene Paredes has made 31-of-32 field goals and leads the league with 122 kicking points.
2. Hamilton RB C.J. Gable has a team-leading 355 rushing yards and 689 yards from scrimmage despite missing time with injuries.
3. The Tiger-Cats are 2-4 against West Division opponents; Calgary is 4-0 against the East.