CFL Week 8
What is going on #FamVice! While the CFL will now have competition from Preseason NFL, there are still edges to be exploited and money to be won! For these articles, I will continue to utilize a position by position format and for the podcasts I will utilize a game by game approach. So without further ado, let’s get into the good stuff!
Mike Reilly – EDM at OTT – $11,000
Though he will probably be the highest owned quarterback in tournaments this week, there is very little reason not to like Mike Reilly. He is going up against an Ottawa Redblacks team that remains the second worst pass defense in the CFL, allowing 348.6 yards per game through the air. It doesn’t even matter that Brandon Zylstra we’ll be out of this game. Simply because he has other great receiving options such as Vidal Hazelton and Bryant Mitchell (whom we may or may not get to later in the article). Factoring in these two receivers with all of the other offensive talents that the Edmonton Eskimos possess, there is very little reason to believe that Mike Reilly could have a bad game in this spot. That is why I suggest using him in all formats, whether they be cash games or tournaments.
Trevor Harris – OTT vs EDM – $9,400
On the other side of this game, we have the greatest of all time when it comes to Canadian football quarterbacks. Realistically though, this game will probably be the highest scoring game of the week, contrary to what the Vegas lines might tell you. The explanation for this selection is based more on the fact that the Eskimos have looked porous on defense the past few weeks than anything that I can explain to you through full season data. Especially if we’re talking about the number one pass defense in the CFL allowing only 250 .7 yd per game passing. Going up against the WOAT Zach Collaros last week, the Edmonton Eskimos defense looked like one that would be playing in the Canadian College Football League and not the CFL. Against the worst quarterback in the league, the Eskimos allowed 282 yards and three touchdowns from Zach Collaros. Something that shouldn’t be tolerated from any defense that you might consider to be “good”. I’m going back to the well this week and using the Canadian God in Trevor Harris to lead my tournament teams to the Promised Land.
Matt Nichols – WPG at HAM – $10,500
Though Matt Nichols hasn’t put up the best of numbers this season, you still have to consider any quarterback that’s going up against the Hamilton Tiger-Cats on a weekly basis. However, his price makes me very hesitant though to roster him in cash games, as I believe it is a wiser decision to roster Mike Reilly at $500 more.
On the flipside, he still makes for an amazing tournament option this week at what could be lower ownership because there is a strong likelihood that The Masses also decide wrangling together the extra dough to get to Reilly is the “safer” play. The Tiger-cats are allowing a league high 367.8 yards per game passing and there is the added bonus that this game is that it’s projected to stay close with Winnipeg is only being favored by 1.5 or 2 points.
Factor in projected 59.5 points (the highest on the slate), especially if you are going to multi enter the GPPs, you will be doing a disservice to your bankroll if you don’t have a couple lineups lead by Nichols.
Mossis Madu – OTT vs EDM – $5,000
Mossis Madu might not be the guy that you want to pair with Trevor Harris this week, but in lineups that you don’t use Trevor Harris as your quarterback, it would be a very silly to avoid Mossis Madu at running back. Quite simply, he’s cheap and he’s going to get a ton of opportunities to run the ball with RB William Powell on the shelf with a hamstring issue.
In the two games that he started in this season, Madu has averaged 13.5 carries per game, as well as 62.5 yds per game rushing. All of this while going up against two rather staunch defenses in Toronto and Calgary. On top of that, he gets to go up against an Edmonton Eskimos team that is allowing 87.5 yards per game rushing. While not the best matchup he could possibly get, it’s certainly not a bad one either. The only issue I find here from Madu is that game script could potentially be an issue. While there is a chance that he gets a decent amount of targets for a running back, there is also a chance that he sees as little as one, or even no receiving targets throughout the game. Which is something that could limit his upside, especially on a PPR site such as DraftKings. However, if you believe this game stays close, and I believe it does, then Madu should not have an issue producing fantasy points for your lineups throughout the game.
Andrew Harris – WPG at HAM – $7,800
There are so many reasons why Andrew Harris should be in every single line up that you build this week. The main thing to love about Andrew Harris this week is the dual phenomenal passing and rushing matchups presented by the less-than-stellar TiCats defense. As mentioned in the Matt Nichols writeup, we know that Hamilton is allowing the most passing yards per game, they are also being gashed for the highest rushing yards per game at 104.2 on the year. Don’t let last week’s numbers for you, as Andrew Harris is still both the rushing and one of the top receivers on this team still, especially in terms of opportunities per game to score fantasy points that he receives. Go all in on this man and you won’t regret it!
LaDarius Perkins – EDM at OTT – $3,000
For the final running back recommendation, I wanted to try to find someone that wasn’t from Ottawa, Edmonton, or Winnipeg. While Perkins is a small man, he is a big value who can do quite a bit when given the opportunity as he showed last week against Hamilton. Putting up 105 yds on 19 carries adding onto receptions for 17 yards. Yes, this was against a horrible Hamilton defense, but you can’t say Ottawa’s rush defense is that much better, allowing 81.4 yds per game on the ground and the second most passing yards per game at 337.4 per tile. Even if the opportunities are slightly reduced from last week, from 19 carries down to 14 or 15 for example, I still don’t see a justifiable reason to fade a minimum priced running back. Even on a slate filled with other value plays.
Though the one caveat I have would be to consider fading him in tournaments, there is absolutely no reason as to why you should be fading Perkins in a cash game setting. Which allows you to roster five other position players that can give you a very high floor on top of the floor that Perkins creates for you in your lineups.
Emmanuel Arceneaux – BC vs SAS – $7,700
For some reason, DraftKings is pricing the second best receiver, or maybe even the top receiver in the CFL all the way down at $7,700 which is nearly a 20% discount from one month ago. Of course, there is some legitimacy to this, with Arceneaux seeing fewer targets this season than he did in his last. While he may only be seeing 7 targets per game overall, he still has by far the most Red Zone targets in total in the entire league with 14.
The man is going to go under owned this week going up against a pretty solid pass defense in the Saskatchewan Roughriders, who allowed 290 yards per game through the air. While this may not be the perfect match of foreign, we have to be able to project to some degree that the BC Lions will get into the red zone at some point in this game. While he is not even close to being one of “my guys” I am planting a flag this weekend with Arceneaux.
Vidal Hazelton – OTT vs EDM – $7,700
Although other receivers for the Edmonton Eskimos are going to benefit with Brandon Zylstra out on the six game injured list, it’s likely that Vidal Hazelton will be the biggest beneficiary of a boost this week. No one else on the Edmonton Eskimos has seen their targets increase prior to this week more than Hazleton. Starting out the season only receiving five targets, it’s steadily increased to 9, 6, 6, 11, and 8 targets throughout the last five games that the Eskimos have played. Not only that, but Hazleton by himself has more Red Zone targets than Zylstra, Mitchell, and Williams combined. I certainly don’t see this changing for the worse with Brandon Zylstra out for the next six games at least.
Be warned though, Hazelton should definitely carry a ton of ownership with him and tournaments. which in a sense, makes him a poor GPP play only because of the ownership that he is projected to have. And a pivot to Arceneaux might not be a bad idea, but check on that with me later on in the premium CFL Slack chat!
S.J Green – TOR vs MTL – $8,800
There is a lot of uncertainty going on with the Toronto Argonauts offense this week. Primarily at the quarterback position with Ricky Ray placed on the six-game injured list this past week. As of this writing, we still don’t know yet who is going to play quarterback for Toronto this week. However, from my best observation, it will be Cody Fajardo who takes the ball under center. This certainly might bode well for SJ Green, because after Ricky Ray came out of the game, Green was still the most targeted receiver of the Toronto bunch from Fajardo seeing three targets from him.
This is not a lot on its own, however, since Fajardo did only attempted 11 passes. But when he did, there were enough deep targets to SJ Green that seemed like it could lead to high fantasy upside if given enough opportunities to throw the ball. The best part is that ownership will be very low on the guy given the QB uncertainty, and that is something that we can use to our advantage.
If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, direct them to me on either the slack chat, or my Twitter @Echeney17. Good luck in your contests this week!