LIVESTREAM CFL: Edmonton Elks @ Toronto Argonauts, June 23, 01:00 CET (1 am, 7 pm June 22 EDT)

Quarterback McLeod Bethel-Thompson will make his first start in Toronto since winning the 109th Grey Cup as a member of the Argonauts when the Edmonton Elks head to BMO Field to face his old team on Saturday night.

More important than the homecoming for Bethel-Thompson is getting out of town with a victory to get his team in the win column.

Bethel-Thompson has thrown for 636 yards through two games and has led the Elks offence to the fourth best pass game in the CFL.

The success of the offence once again runs through the pivot position and top receivers Eugene LewisKurleigh Gittens Jr. and Dillon Mitchell. The strength of the receiving corps took a hit on Friday, when the team revealed DaVaris Daniels is on the six-game injured list with a groin issue. 

The team also has moved All-Star defensive lineman Folarin Orimolade (ankle) to the six-game injured list.

» Depth Chart: TOR | EDM
» Game Notes: Edmonton at Toronto

If there’s an area of concern in Bethel-Thompson’s game, it’s the three interceptions compared to his two touchdowns.

Taking care of the football is something head coach Chris Jones wants to see his team improve on this week.

Watch live. Edmonton Elks @ Toronto Argonauts, June 23, 01:00 CET (1 am, 7 pm June 22 EDT)

“I thought McLeod played pretty decent but we can’t turn the ball over, pretty simple,” Jones told reporters“First week we had some turnovers that were inopportune, last week certainly hurt us at the wrong time. We have to not only have yardage and big plays but we have to have the ability to not turn the football over. But I do like their energy and I do like where we’re headed with our positivity.”

Squaring off with an Argos pass defence that allowed 363 yards in their lone game this season, he’ll be putting the ball in the air consistently on Saturday night.

Coming off a Week 2 bye, Argos head coach Ryan Dinwiddie hopes his defence can shake off the rust and correct their issues. 

Defensive backs Leonard JohnsonRoyce Metchie and Benjie Franklin combined for 17 defensive tackles in their win over the Lions, while DaShaun Amos had an interception. All four are needed as Bethel-Thompson has a knack for spreading the football around.

Watch live. Edmonton Elks @ Toronto Argonauts, June 23, 01:00 CET (1 am, 7 pm June 22 EDT)

While the pass defence looks for a turnaround, the run defence is hoping for more of the same after allowing just 60 yards in the opener.

Veteran defensive lineman Jake Ceresna and linebacker Wynton McManis are the guys Dinwiddie leans on to make plays.

With six sacks on the season, getting to Bethel-Thompson and forcing him into quick decisions can help the secondary keep tight coverage downfield.

It won’t be easy for the front, though, as running back Kevin Brown is working to find his stride. Jones would love Brown to breakout and take pressure off their quarterback and receivers.

He also knows the play at the line of scrimmage will go a long way in determining who comes out on top.

“It’s a great test, just like last week with Montreal, they’ve been there, they’ve done that,” Jones told reporters“That’s probably one of their biggest strengths. They believe in who they are and what they are. Their players feel like they’ll find a way to win football games.”

Across the field, Argos quarterback Cameron Dukes showed no signs of nerves as the team’s new starter. Dukes completed 21 of 27 passes and found the end zone three times through the air and once on the ground against BC.

New weapon Rasheed Bailey looks comfortable in his new surroundings and has familiarity with the Elks from his time in Winnipeg, while Damonte Coxie also checks back in.

With seven different receivers having multiple catches on the season, Dukes has options when he goes to the air against what’s been a solid secondary in Edmonton.

Darrius BrattonKai Gray and Marcus Lewis are the leaders of the pass defence that’s giving up an average of 287 yards, good for fourth best in the CFL. 

Similarly, the Elks defensive front has been good, holding opposing rushers to 78 yards per game in a pair of contests.

Defensive linemen Elliott BrownNoah Curtis and Robert Nkemdiche all had a sack against Montreal last week and have the dual responsibility of finding their way to Dukes and shutting down running back Ka’Deem Carey.

Dinwiddie showed little hesitation in Week 2 going to Carey to take plays off the plate of Dukes, handing the ball to him 16 times and using him in the pass game with four receptions for 40 yards and a touchdown.

The Edmonton defence has taken seven penalties and must play a clean game to avoid giving the Argos extra yards and plays to put points on the board.

A win gives Edmonton their first of the year. For Toronto, they can move to 2-0 at home.

Watch live. Edmonton Elks @ Toronto Argonauts, June 23, 01:00 CET (1 am, 7 pm June 22 EDT)

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