The Argos finished second in the East last year with a 9-9 record before defeating Edmonton, Montreal and Calgary en route to their record 16th Grey Cup
After surprising everyone with a late season run that saw Toronto win the 100th Grey Cup on home turf, QB Ricky Ray returns to an Argos lineup that remains relatively intact. 33-year-old slotback Romby Bryant provides Ray with another passing threat and the deep receiving corps should help open things up for RB Chad Kackert.
Khalif Mitchell can be an impact player on the defensive side but that hinges on the coaching staff’s ability to contain the explosive attitude Mitchell brings to the field. The loss of DT Armond Armstead to the NFL will certainly hurt but he is not irreplaceable and it looks as if the biggest question mark this defense is in the secondary, where the team has parted ways with three of five starters from 2012.
BY THE NUMBERS
The Argos play six of their first nine games at home this season where they finished 4-5 SU in 2012 after a 2-0 SU/ATS start. Tack on a pair of double-digit home playoff victories including the 35-22 Grey Cup win against Calgary and we can probably expect to see some inflated pointspreads for the Boatmen during these early home games.
– CFL home favorites were 36-20 (64-percent) straight-up in 2012 but just 26-29-1 (47-percent) ATS
PickSixtySports.com has tracked Grey Cup Odds at three separate sports betting outlets since early May and after hovering around the +500 mark for most of the spring, Toronto (+450) looks to be gathering some momentum. The last team to repeat as Grey Cup champs was Montreal in 2009-10 and the last time Toronto won back to back championship titles was in 1996-97.
– In 2012, the Argos’ odds to win the Cup opened at +650 and closed at +658
Key additions for the Argos in 2013 include DT Khalif Mitchell, WR Romby Bryant, DT Jermaine Reid, OC Marcus Brady and LB James Yurichuk.
Subtractions: DE Ejiro Kulae, K Noel Prefontaine, DB Evan McCollough, DE Ricky Foley and DT Armond Armstead
Read CFL betting previews for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and Hamilton Tiger-Cats!
Toronto is wearing a target this year as the defending champ and this new look defensive group will need to develop chemistry in a hurry. Offensive points per game and red zone efficiency were issues last year and while improvements are likely it’s possible they could come at a slower pace than the CFL oddsmaker’s tendency to ramp up lines on proven winners. Toronto is 9-1 SU and 6-4 ATS the past ten times they were favored by more than a touchdown and seven of those games stayed under the total. As the defense tightens up to defend its title, try looking for spots to go against public betting opinion with a play on the “Under”.
CFL betting previews for every team will be posted throughout the week as we countdown to 2013 kickoff on Thursday, June 27!