Tuesday Morning QB (CFL Week 11)

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It was Labour Day weekend in Week 11 and that means one thing in the CFL as the second biggest week of the season took place.

Labour Day weekend is a long-standing tradition in the league that brings the biggest rivalries in the league and in the country to light.

Long before the Oilers and the Flames fought it out for provincial superiority it was the Stamps and the Esks who were fighting to be the best in Alberta.

Long before any rivalry took place in Canada there was the Battle of Ontario between Hamilton and Toronto.

Never to be forgotten the Prairies, where football is king, there are two teams whose provinces sit side by side and who count the two weeks around Labour Day as the biggest in the season.

Labour Day brings these rivalries to the forefront in the league and make Labour Day weekend one of the most exciting on the CFL calendar.

It is great for these six teams who get to see their biggest rivals every year and at the very least take home some bragging rights in the season.

What is not great is that Labour Day is really only for the six teams that are involved in these rivalries.

There are three teams that are left out because they have never really formed a rivalry in the league.

The Ottawa REDBLACKS are too young to have formed a real rivalry in only their third year back in the league.

In BC it is as easy as the fact that the Lions are so far away from everyone that they have no natural rivals in the league.

In Montreal, they have been the other team for so long as they sit outside of the big rivalry in Ontario and the same when Winnipeg was in the east.

None of these three have really been able to gain a rivalry but the CFL has been trying to get something going.

When the league was only eight teams every team had a match-up on Labour Day and with all other teams busy the Lions and Alouettes were set to face-off.

It could have been a rivalry as they represented the two furthest parts of the league I a coast-to-coast battle.

More often than not the game went to the Alouettes who were a far better team and far more consistent in most of the years that they played against each other.football-sidebar

Lately, the Lions have become more of a forgotten team in the Labour Day match-ups usually getting an early match-up during the week like they did this year.

That is because the CFL finally has a rival for Montreal if it can be built properly.

With the introduction of Ottawa, the Alouettes had a natural rival in the game but they still needed to build a little history to get near the level of the other legendary matchups on Labour Day.

Some of that history was built earlier this year when Duron Carter bumped into Ottawa head coach Rick Campbell.

It has created some hate between the two teams and could be a start to another great Labour Day match-up.

Both teams did face-off this year at the start of Labour Day and the game turned out to be better than most expected.

If both teams can continue to add to their history against each other the Labour Day weekend may finally have as many rivals as they can get for the time being.

The Lions may be left out until a potential 10th team but if the CFL continues to match the REDBLACKS and the Alouettes together the history and the hate will grow into a serious rivalry in the east.

If the CFL decides to ignore that Labour Day game the rivalry will never properly form and a bigger gap will be left in one of the best weekends in the league.

It will only be seen next year but the budding rivalry is here and as long as it is handled properly it may join the likes of those Labour Day Classic games which often turn out to be the best of the season.

Fourth Down:
(More news this week in the CFL)

Legend Lost
This week the CFL was preparing for a great weekend but had to take a step back to notice history when CFL legend, Normie Kwong passed away as he will always be remembered as one of the greatest running backs of all-time

Glenn Out
The Montreal Alouettes are reportedly looking to make a change before they are entirely out of the playoff race sitting Kevin Glenn and giving Rakeem Cato the start in Week 12 as they try to shake things up

A Short Leash
The Roughriders made some negative headlines this week as they signed Khalif Mitchell to their practice squad a year after he was released by Montreal for anti-Semitic comments and the CFL is paying close attention saying if he violates their social media policy again he could be kicked out of the league

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Week 11:
BC Lions 16-13 Toronto Argonauts
– The struggles for the Argos at BMO field continued as they took on the BC Lions and fought a close battle but in the end, couldn’t take advantage of offensive opportunities and letting the Lions kick a last second field goal to take the win

Ottawa REDBLACKS 19-14 Montreal Alouettes
– The REDBLACKS came into this game struggling to find the swagger that they had at the beginning of the season but they were able to get by the Alouettes even if it was barely getting by them

Winnipeg Blue Bombers 28-25 Saskatchewan Roughriders
– The Bombers had not won on Labour Day in Saskatchewan for 11-straight years and although they let the Riders hang around all game they did get the win to get their fifth straight win on the season

Calgary Stampedes 45-24 Edmonton Eskimos
– The Stampeders and Eskimos have put together great battles in the last few years but this was not one of them as the Stamps showed who the best in Alberta was by trouncing the Eskimos in the Battle of Alberta

Hamilton Tiger-Cats 49-36 Toronto Argonauts
– It hasn’t been a place where the Argos have been all that great but in the first half they took over the Labour Day Classic getting out to a big early lead until the second half when the Ti-Cats stormed back for the win

Week 12:
Montreal Alouettes vs. BC Lions (Friday, September 9th; 10:00 pm ET)
– The Alouettes continue to be one team that is struggling to get wins but they are hoping that Rakeem Cato can be the difference for them when they take on the Lions who have played great all season

Saskatchewan Roughriders vs. Winnipeg Blue Bombers (Saturday, September 10th; 4:00 pm ET)
– The Banjo Bowl is often considered bigger than the Labour Day match-up as the Riders head to Winnipeg looking to get some revenge from the Labour Day loss while the Bombers try to make it six wins in a row

Calgary Stampeders vs. Edmonton Eskimos (Saturday, September 10th; 7:00 pm ET)
– The Battle of Alberta rematch pits two of the best teams together as the Eskimos look to get some revenge on their provincial rivals after looking terrible in the Labour Day Game while the Stamps just try to do the same thing

Hamilton Tiger-Cats vs. Toronto Argonauts (Sunday, September 11th; 4:30 pm ET)
– The Argos seemed to have what they needed to win but dropped the game in Hamilton and now they head back to Toronto looking for only their second win at BMO Field against a team with plenty of confidence as Hamilton looks for the season sweep

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