Game day: Alouettes to Argonauts

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MONTREAL ALOUETTES (2-3) at TORONTO ARGONAUTS (3-3)

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Friday, 7:30 p.m., BMO Field

Television: TSN; Radio: 10:50 a.m.

Line: Toronto by 2.5 points

Weather: Partly cloudy, 15C; 20% chance of rain; wind 11 km / h

STATISTICS PACK

TORMTL

AVERAGES PER GAME (with league ranking)

POINTS FOR

18.7 (8th) 26.2 (1st)

POINTS AGAINST

23.5 (6th) 24.8 (7th)

LAND RUSH

92.5 (5th) 149.4 (1st)

PASS

282.2 (4th) 243.6 (6th)

NET LAND

353.8 (4th) 385.6 (1st)

AUTHORIZED LAND

317.7 (3rd) 346.8 (6th)

FIVE THINGS TO LOOK FOR

MAC IS BACK

McLeod Bethel-Thompson takes the start for injured Nick Arbuckle. The quarterback affectionately known as the Mac posted solid numbers against the Alouettes; what he has to do is find a way to win. This will be his first appearance of the season with BMO. During the 2019 campaign, MBT led the Argos to two home wins to end the season, each against sad Ottawa. He will need to be protected and establishing a running game will help.

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STANBACK ON THE WALL

Als RB William Stanback is the best in the business. He leads the league with three rushing games for 100 yards or more. He’s a downhill runner in the mold of RB Riders William Powell, who nicked the Argos last week rushing for 122 yards. Stanback amassed 139 yards in Montreal‘s loss to British Columbia last week, including 81 in the first half.

UP AND ADAMS

Als QB Vernon Adams Jr. missed his head coach and coach QB Khari Jones last week because Jones was in isolation after testing positive for COVID. Jones nurtured Adams, who is a playmaker. It will be interesting to see how Jones composes plays for Adams, whose confidence may falter.

FOLLOW JONESES

Khari Jones and Ryan Dinwiddie are both from Sacramento, Jones on the north side of the state capital, Dinwiddie on the south side. Each started a Gray Cup game for Winnipeg during their playing careers. Friday marks the first time they will face each other as head coaches. Another Jones, Chris, returns with the Argos. His first gig was in Montreal as a D-line coach in 2002.

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BEDE RENEWS TIES

P / PK Boris Bede played five seasons in Montreal, playing 80 regular season games. He will play for the first time against his former team as an opponent, an occasion which Bede says will be exciting. The Argos are set to play in Montreal on October 22, which will likely bring back a lot of emotions for Bede.

REMARKABLE

The Alouettes have six players on the injured list in six games, including Mario Alford, who started his career in three-way football with the Argos. The return specialist broke an ankle bone against BC. His replacement, Rashad Ross, will make his Alouettes debut… Toronto has 12 players on the six-game injured list… Tigie Sankoh will make his debut for the Argos. The 23-year-old was selected third in the world draft earlier this year. He signed as a free agent with the Cleveland Browns in 2018 as part of the NFL’s International Player Pathway program and spent the next two seasons on the team’s practice squad before being released to the NFL. start of the 2020 season. Sankoh was born in Sierra Leone, but grew up in Maryland before his family moved to England when he was 15. Sankoh was a defensive back for the London Warriors of the British Football League… Montreal has won three straight games against the Argos and four of the last five in a rivalry that dates back to 1946.

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THE KEY MATCHUP

Argos OGDylan Giffen vs. Als DT Almondo Sewell

The rookie gets his first start against veteran Sewell, who is among the best in his job. Giffen is physical, but Sewell is a beast on the inside. The Argos list Giffen as a starter on the depth board, but there is still a possibility that Shane Richards will be called up to start the game. Richards suffers from an ankle injury. The left guard post introduced Peter Nicastro, Philip Blake and then Richards as starters. If Giffen starts, and he likely will, he’ll be the fourth player in seven games to start at left guard. The Als want to control the line of scrimmage and with Sewell as an anchor, the Argos’ O line has to be at its best.

OUR OPINION: Als 25, Argos 18

OUR ADVICE: Chris Jones will eventually leave his mark on the defense, but it takes time and probably some additions to the Toronto squad. The Als aren’t as stoned as the Argos and their running game sets the pace with Stanback as the star fullback. Adams Jr. won’t be as bad as last week. It’s a tough game for the Argos, who need to be clean and win the turnover battle. The Argos are undefeated at home, but their margin for error is slim.

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