Friday, June 19, 2015

2015 CFL Futures

My CFL Futures Odds Preview is reprinted by permission of Sports Betting Stats

2015 Canadian Football League Futures Odds

The CFL is gearing up for another season of football “north of the border” and Bovada has recently updated its futures odds to win this season’s championship. The following is a closer look at some of the top contenders to take home a Grey Cup title in 2015.
CFL 2015 Grey Cup Futures Odds

The Calgary Stampeders impressive run to the 2014 Grey Cup title in the CFL has them listed as the favorites to repeat, but teams such as Saskatchewan and Edmonton are also gearing-up for a run at the Grey Cup with a new regular season of action set to kick things off a bit later this month.

The following is a look at my top three teams to win this season’s CFL Grey Cup based on betting odds from Bovada.

Top Valued Favorite

Calgary has been listed as a 10/3 favorite to successfully defend its 2014 Grey Cup title, but Montreal in 2009 and 2010 were the only team to win back-to-back titles since Toronto in the late 90’s so it remains a tall task. I am going with the second team on Bovada’s list as my top-valued favorite with a play on the Saskatchewan Roughriders at 5/1 betting odds. The Roughriders won the Grey Cup in 2013 and they remained in the thick of things last year despite losing their quarterback Darian Durant for a good part of the season due to injury.

The Roughriders will have a pair of new coordinators heading into the 2015 season with Jacques Chapdelaine running the offense and Greg Quick handling things on the defensive side of the ball. With Durant in the lineup, they won eight of 10 games, so the key to another Grey Cup run is still in his hands (and throwing arm).

Top Valued Contender

The West Division remains stacked after sending four teams to last season’s playoffs, but I am going to go with the East’s Hamilton Tiger-Cats as my top-valued contender at 13/2 odds to win the 2015 Grey Cup title. The Tiger-Cats have been to the last two Grey Cup Finals and in 2014 they gave Calgary all it could handle in a tough 20-16 loss as 6.5-point underdogs. The main difference in that game was a Hamilton kick return for a touchdown that was wiped off the board due to a penalty.

Zach Collaros has emerged as one of the most exciting young quarterbacks in the CFL and the versatile Brandon Banks was a duel threat as a receiver and on special teams returning kicks. The key to making the third time a charm could lie in a young defense that was prone to some bad mistakes at times, but still fairly solid overall. The Tiger-Cats are going to have to do a better job at winning on the road after going just 2-7 in nine road games as part of an overall record of 9-9.

Top Valued Longshot

The British Columbia Lions have turned the reins over to Jeff Tedford this season after a very productive run in the college ranks as head coach of the Pac 12’s California Golden Bears. They made in into the postseason last year in the highly competitive West Division with a record of 9-9, but the Lions are counting on Tedford to help this team close the gap with a better performance on both sides of the ball. Bovada’s betting odds that they make the leap all the way to Grey Cup Champions have been set at 6/1 and while they are technically not huge longshots compared to the posted odds for some of the teams in the East, it would be still be quite a feat to take home this year’s title given the level of competition the Lions will face in their division.

One of the concerns has to be the health of quarterback Travis Lulay, who missed time last season with a shoulder injury. If he can quickly return to form, he may be the perfect player to effectively run Tedford’s quick tempo offense where the passing game is the primary means to moving the ball downfield.

Other CFL Futures Odds

The betting odds for the other CFL teams on Bovada’s list start with Calgary at the top at 10/3 odds. Edmonton follows Saskatchewan as an 11/2 third-favorite. Next on the list after BC and Hamilton at 8/1 odds are both Montreal and Toronto. Winnipeg is once again expected to bring up the rear in the West at 17/2 odds to win a title and Ottawa has the longest odds on the board at 20/1 after winning just two games as an expansion team in the East last year.

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