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The Grueling Truth - Where Legends Speak / 2022 CFL Week 1 Winnipeg vs Ottawa: Preview and Prediction

2022 CFL Week 1 Winnipeg vs Ottawa: Preview and Prediction

Preview!
Publish Date: 06/10/2022
Fact checked by: Mark Lewis
HAMILTON, ON - DECEMBER 12: Zach Collaros #9 of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers celebrate their victory with the Grey Cup following the 108th Grey Cup CFL Championship Game against the Hamilton Tiger-Cats at Tim Hortons Field on December 12, 2021 in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)

Winnipeg Blue Bombers vs Ottawa Redblacks (Friday, 8:30 pm ET)

The Blue Bombers, the defending champions, open their quest to three-peat against the CFL’s worst team a year ago. Winnipeg is the most significant Week 1 favorite for a good reason. I believe the Redblacks will be improved this season, but that improvement will take a while. Check out the best bookmakers for betting on the CFL!

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This offseason, the Redblacks made some progress toward respectability with the signing of Jeremiah Masoli. Masoli was a veteran quarterback who had a successful eight-season career with Tiger-Cats before moving to Redblacks. Masoli also met Jaelon Acklin, a former Hamilton target who was a trusted receiver for Massoli in Hamilton. This gives Masoli some familiarity from the beginning of his Ottawa tenure. The RedBlacks will still struggle on offense early in this season.

The Bombers let franchise legend Andrew Harris walk away in free agency. However, they feel they can thrive without him. They have Johnny Augustine-Brady Oliveira duo still on the team, who stepped in for Harris during his long injury absence in 2021 and played well.

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Winnipeg also welcomes Drew Wolitarsky and Nic Demski back as pass-catchers. At the same time, Rasheed Bailey returns, and Greg Ellingson, who joined as an offseason acquisition, Ellingson was a significant addition that will improve quarterback Zach Collaros’ downfield upside. Collaros has had injury issues in his past, but if he stays healthy, Winnipeg could easily win another Grey Cup.

The Bombers are heavy favourites to beat a team featuring a veteran quarterback in their first regular-season match under a new system; given Winnipeg’s league-best defense, this game should be a mismatch.

Pick: Winnipeg Blue Bombers -9.5 (-110)

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