Winnipeg – Winnipeg Blue Bombers haven’t won four games in a row since 2011. And they haven’t won four in a row on the road for 14 years. They will try to achieve both when they visit Montreal on Friday night. Riding a three-game win streak, the Bombers come off their bye week full of confidence in the wake of decisive wins over Edmonton, Hamilton and Toronto. Standing in their way is a Montreal team that is last in the CFL East 3-5, but is feeling good about itself after a 43-19 rout of the Ottawa RedBlacks in their last outing. And Thursday’s 29-23 B.C. win over Ottawa means the Als can get within one point of the first place RedBlacks if they defeat the Bombers. Conversely, the Blue Bombers at 4-4 need a win to keep pace with the Lions, who are now 6-3 and just one point behind first place Calgary in the West.
The Bombers have shaken up their receiving corps, sitting down Kris Adams and Jace Davis in favor of Gerrard Sheppard and Quincy McDuffie. McDuffie comes off the injured list to resume his kick returning duties and start at receiver for the first time this season. McDuffie is anxious to show he is more than just a kick returner. Sheppard has impressed the Bomber coaches with his hustle on special teams and will now get a chance to show what he can do as a starting receiver. Bombers also welcome all-star cornerback Johnny Adams back from injury. He replaces rookie Terrence Frederick who has been very impressive but who was injured in Winnipeg’s last outing.
The Alouettes, coming off that big win in Ottawa, will welcome back two of their top offensive weapons in running back Tyrell Sutton, the leading rusher in the CFL in 2015, and receiver Kenny Stafford. Montreal quarterback Kevin Glenn turned in one of the best performances of his long career in the win over Ottawa, throwing for 382 yards and 5 touchdowns. Als have a poor 1-3 home record while the Bombers are 3-1 on the road, continuing a season long theme in the CFL. Road teams have won a stunning 23 of 37 games.
Hard to say how this game will play out. Both teams have been strong defensively as they are tied for 2nd best in the CFL in points allowed at 23 per game. The clubs are quite comparable in most of the offensive categories. Where the Bombers have an edge is in the takeaway-giveaway category where Winnipeg is a CFL leading plus-12 with a league leading 27 takeaways. Montreal is plus 2.
The game kicks off at 6pm Manitoba time with the broadcast on 680-CJOB beginning at 5pm with the pre-game show.