The Winnipeg Blue Bombers are once again favoured to win the 2022 CFL Grey Cup. There's a good reason. The Blue Bombers have won the previous two Grey Cup championships and are aiming to three-peat this season.
This will be the 64th season of the Canadian Football League. The action kicks off this week with four games -- one on Thursday, one on Friday, and two on Saturday.
While the vast majority of the CFL’s fanbase is based in Canada, there's a growing legion of fans in the United States and elsewhere around the world. This is especially true when it comes to betting on the CFL.
Whether you’re new to watching and betting the CFL or a longtime fan, here’s a few things you need to know about the game and contenders for this year’s Grey Cup.
ODDS TO WIN THE 2022 GREY CUP
Winnipeg is becoming a dynasty. There's a good reason why the Blue Bombers are once again favoured to win the 2022 CFL Grey Cup. Winnipeg has won the previous two Grey Cup championships and are aiming to three-peat this season.
Spreads.ca makes the Blue Bombers faves to repeat at 3.50. Hamilton and Saskatchewan are next in line, at 6.00 and 6.50 respectively:
CFL WEEK 1
The CFL campaign officially begins on Thursday, June 9th.
This past offseason was marred by labor issues. In fact, the CFL suffered a breif player strike, the first since 1974. Fortunately, both sides struck terms on a tentative new agreement just days later.
The past few seasons have also been impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. Now, the CFL will return to its typical 18-game schedule in 2022, spanning 21 weeks.
Regina will play host to the 109th annual Grey Cup on November 20th.
Here are the odds for WEEK 1 according to SPREADS.CA:
A NOTE ABOUT CFL TOTALS BETTING: RULES CHANGES
Scoring has been on the decline in the CFL the past few seasons. The average total score of a CFL game dipped to 43.1 points in 2021. Just two seasons earlier, that same game total averaged out to be 49.5 points. This reflects a substantial decrease. Since most football fans and bettors love to watch high-scoring games, the CFL decided to take the proper steps to boost its current scoring numbers.
Darren Hackwood is the associate vice president of officiating for the league. He added the following comments on the rule changes in a recent interview posted on CFL.ca:
“We want to make sure that we’re doing what’s right for the game. At the same time, if (the changes) work out we can add to them next year. I was kind of concerned what the reception might be, ‘well you’re not doing anything.’ It definitely was refreshing to get some positive feedback.”
One of the biggest rule changes involves the placement of the hash marks. By moving them closer together, they will now be nine yard apart as opposed to 17. This brings the far receiver more into play. Kickoffs will be adjusted by five yards to a team’s 30-yard line as opposed to the 35-yard line. Following a field goal or one-point score, the opposing team will start their next offensive possession from their own 40-yards line as opposed to the 35-yard line. Adding more variety to innovative play calling, a team may have two quarterbacks in the 12-player offensive lineup.
Changing the rules to enhance scoring will also have an impact on Oddsmakers setting the total lines for CFL games this season. Adjusting the numbers will be a work in progress for the first few weeks of the league’s 18-game regular season schedule.
Keep this in mind when betting totals, especially early in the season.
REGULAR SEASON PROJECTIONS
Let's now take a look at some CFL experts and see what they think. Here's one CFL expert, Scott Jack at Scores and Stats:
Four Top Contenders to Win the 2022 CFL Grey Cup
Winnipeg Blue Bombers Team Preview
Winnipeg finished with the best record in the CFL last regular season at 11-3. They lost RB Andrew Harris during the off-season, but QB Zach Collaros is back and will keep the offense in good shape.
The Blue Bombers defense is the best in the CFL. They only allowed 13.4 PPG last regular season and if they can come close to that number again, the Blue Bombers are going to be a tough team to defeat.
Saskatchewan Roughriders Team Preview
The Roughriders made it to the West Final last year before losing a close game against Winnipeg. They finished the regular season in 2nd place in the West (9-5). QB Cody Fajardo will be back this season.
Saskatchewan ranked 7th in points scored (20.7 PPG) last season and need to improve on that side of the football if they want to make it to the 2022 CFL Grey Cup, but the defense should be strong again.
Hamilton Tiger-Cats Team Preview
Hamilton finished last year in 2nd place in the East (8-6), but they made it to the 2021 Grey Cup.
The Tiger-Cats ranked 2nd in points allowed (17.4 PPG), but they need to improve on offense if they want to be crowned Grey Cup champions for the first time since they won back in 1999.
Toronto Argonauts Team Preview
Toronto finished 1st in the East last season (9-5), but they lost to Hamilton in the East Final.
The Argos should be better offensively this season and they’ll have a chance to win the Grey Cup, which they last did in 2017. Where they need to improve is playing on the road where they went 3-4 last season.