The Edmonton Elks look for an elusive home win as they welcome the Montreal Alouettes to Commonwealth Stadium in Week 17 of CFL action on Saturday.
Oddsmakers don't expect the Elks to get it this week, with CFL betting lines opening the Als as 3.5-point road favourites and the Over/Under at 54.5.
With Montreal looking to march closer toward a playoff berth and Edmonton yet to be eliminated, here are my best free Alouettes vs. Elks CFL picks and predictions for October 1.
Alouettes vs Elks best odds
Alouettes vs Elks picks and predictions
Alouettes All-Star running back William Stanback has been practicing in a limited capacity but isn't quite ready to return to their lineup this week after missing more than three months with a broken ankle.
However, Edmonton's attack will get a boost with the return of All-Star receiver Kenny Lawler, who has missed the last three games and still ranks ninth in the league with 849 receiving yards.
In his absence, I expected the Elks offense to collapse, but it has improved with Taylor Cornelius becoming more comfortable under center and CFL newcomers Dillon Mitchell and Kevin Brown emerging as weapons.
Edmonton's offensive line and defense still need plenty of work but coach Chris Jones is starting to find his guys and the Als pass rush and offense have been wildly inconsistent week-to-week.
With the Elks coming off their bye week with some momentum, I like them to pull off the upset and win their first home game since 2019.
My best bet: Elks moneyline (+160 at DraftKings)
Alouettes vs Elks spread analysis
The Alouettes are second in the East with a 6-7 record and have won four of their last five games, going 4-1 ATS during that span. Last week, they clawed back in the fourth quarter to beat the Tiger-Cats 23-16 at home.
Montreal is getting solid play from veteran quarterback Trevor Harris, but the offensive line has been below-average and the running game really misses Stanback.
On defense, the Als have been a middle-of-the-pack squad that ranks fifth in the league in yards allowed per pass attempt (8.2) while tying the Elks for second-last in yards allowed per rush (5.2).
When these teams previously faced off in Montreal on July 14, the Elks pulled off a 32-31 comeback win after scoring the last 20 points of the game.
The Elks looked like a historically bad team at the time, and while they still have the worst record in the West at 4-10, they've been much more competitive over the last month (with the exception of a blowout loss to the Stampeders three weeks ago).
Edmonton is fresh off a bye week, and in Week 15 they upset the Roughriders 26-24 for their first win at Mosaic Stadium since 2015. The Elks outgained the Riders 439-311 in that contest, while their defense sacked Cody Fajardo eight times.
Alouettes vs Elks Over/Under analysis
Although both of these offenses have been moving the ball lately, this total of 54.5 still seems a tad too high.
Montreal has seen only three totals of 50 or above this season (the highest was 51 last week against Hamilton) and the Under easily cashed on each occasion.
The Elks have seen only two games with an O/U of at least 50: Week 5 against the Stamps and Week 9 versus the Lions, who still had record-breaking QB Nathan Rourke at the time.
The Elks defense was gashed in both of those games but it's worth mentioning that they've made massive strides on that side of the ball. Through their first eight games of the season, Edmonton had surrendered a whopping 377.5 yards per game, but in six games since have allowed just 326.8 ypg.
Alouettes vs Elks trend to know
Elks are 4-1 ATS vs. a team with a losing record. Find more CFL betting trends for Alouettes vs. Elks.
Alouettes vs Elks game info
|Location:||Commonwealth Stadium, Edmonton, AB|
|Date:||Saturday, October 1, 2022|
|Kickoff:||5:00 p.m. ET|
Alouettes vs Elks key injuries
Alouettes: Nick Usher DE (Questionable), William Stanback RB (Doubtful), Greg Reid DB (Out), Najee Murray DB (Out).
Elks: Tim Bonner DL (Questionable), Jake Cersesna DT (Questionable), Ed Gainey DB (Questionable), Nyles Morgan LB (Questionable), James Wilder Jr. RB (Out), Aaron Grymes S (Out), Emmanuel Arceneaux WR (Out), Makana Henry DT (Out).
Find our latest CFL injury reports.