Wins during the first-half of the season won’t come easy for the Riders but this team has the weapons to make life interesting in the West
It’s no coincidence that Riders GM Brendan Taman has loaded up his club this season with proven veterans as the Riders prepare to host the 101st Grey Cup in November, 2013. Taman is notorious for relying on a veteran corps of players and it’s evident this year he’s assembled a squad with potential to make a run for the big game.
[dropcap2]T[/dropcap2]he additions of slot back Geroy Simon and defensive end Ricky Foley bring a winning atmosphere to the Riders along with some leadership for the late season push Taman expects his club to make. With all eyes focused on QB Darian Durant, this could turn into a defining season for the fifth-year pivot as Taman and the rest of the Rider Nation wait to see if Double-D has developed the leadership and ability necessary to bring his club a championship.
BY THE NUMBERS
Mosaic Stadium in Regina will play host the 101st Grey Cup on November 24 and the trending topics for Grey Cup betting show a two-year win streak (Lions, Argos) for teams who host and partake in the big game. It wasn’t always as rosy for the gracious Canadian host as only three teams in 98 previous Cups had ever raised the glory in front of their home faithful (1972 Ti-Cats, 1977 Als and 1994 Lions).
– In the 2011 season leading up to the Lions’ Grey Cup win they were 7-2 ATS at home following a 0-2 ATS start
– In the 2012 season leading up to the Argos’ Grey Cup win they finished 3-0 ATS at home but that was after a 2-8 ATS start in Rogers Centre
PickSixtySports.com tracked Grey Cup Odds through the spring at three sports betting shops and the Riders (+450) made the biggest jump of all teams the past month, 300 points from +750. The Riders also have Season Win Total odds listed at 9 Over (-115).
– In 2012, the Roughriders’ odds to win the Cup opened at +900 and closed at +1356
CFL Season Win Total futures are now available at Bodog Sports – Click here!
A few key additions this season for the Green Riders include SB Geroy Simon, DB Dwight Anderson, DE Rickey Foley, DB Weldon Brown, K Brody McKnight and LB Rey Williams.
Subtractions: S James Patrick, DE Odell Willis, LB Shomari Williams, LB Joe Lobendahn, DE Brent Hawkins, KR Tristan Jackson, DB Chris McKenzie
Read our 2013 CFL Eastern Conference Previews for online betting tips!
We wouldn’t put a lot of weight into the fact Saskatchewan is hosting the Grey Cup when `capping this team through the season but the Riders are 22-10 ATS the first two weeks of the season since 1996 and 41-22 ATS the first month of the season. Saskatchewan will be tested the first eight weeks with one of the toughest first-half schedules but if they can overcome their struggles with Edmonton in Week 1 we look for them to use that game as a springboard towards a successful season in the West.
ATS: Against the Spread