LIVESTREAM CFL: Hamilton Tiger-Cats @ BC Lions, Aug. 27, 01:00 CET (1 am, 7 pm Aug. 26 EDT)

VANCOUVER — Two teams looking to get back in the win column go head-to-head when the Hamilton Tiger-Cats travel west to take on the BC Lions Saturday night.

Hamilton enters the game on the heels of a 24-10 home loss to the Edmonton Elks.

BC’s comeback attempt against Saskatchewan fell just short as they dropped a 34-29 decision to the Roughriders to close out Week 11.

If there was a positive for the Tiger-Cats in their loss it was the play of James Butler, who looked every bit the top rusher he was in 2022 with the Lions, as he put up 114 yards and a touchdown.

» Depth Chart: HAM | BC

He’ll try to replicate his performance against a Leos’ defence he knows well and that’s allowing a meager 77.6 rushing yards per game. Met up front by Mathieu BettsDavid Menard and Sione Teuhema, it’s going to be quite the battle at the line of scrimmage.

Under centre, Taylor Powell continues on as the starter with Bo Levi Mitchell and Matthew Shiltz still sidelined with injuries. He failed to find the end zone against the Elks and doing so this week won’t be any easier of a task as the Lions’ secondary has been stout shutting down the pass game. Surrendering the third fewest pass yards per game with 231.2, Ticats’ top receivers Tim White and D’haquille Williams need to be at their best.

Even with a 3-6 record, Lions head coach Rick Campbell isn’t buying into the narrative that the Ticats are in a bit of a downturn.

“The thing is when you watch film in this league, every team is capable,” Campbell told reporters. “There’s no bad team where you throw in the film and say, ‘These guys just don’t look good.’ You really have to play well to beat people. We haven’t seen these guys in a long time. It’s fun to see a new opponent. Same deal every week, you have to play really well to beat anyone in this league.”

Opposing the Ticats’ receivers downfield is a unit that may only have eight interceptions but features plenty of playmaking ability in T.J. Lee and Garry Peters, who has eight pass knockdowns.

Watch live. Hamilton Tiger-Cats @ BC Lions, Aug. 27, 01:00 CET (1 am, 7 pm Aug. 26 EDT)

Quincy Mauger and Marcus Sayles have also been stellar this season, making for a potentially tough night for the Ticats’ receiving corps.

The Ticats’ defence on the other hand, has struggled against both the pass and the run, ranking in the bottom half of the league in yards allowed.

With a high octane Lions offence waiting on the other sideline, defensive backs Tunde Adeleke and Richard Leonard will be up against a strong receiving corps.

Receivers Alexander Hollins and Keon Hatcher rank in the top five in yards with 715 and 657, respectively. That’s not to mention the explosive ability of Lucky Whitehead.

Needless to say, Vernon Adams Jr. never seems to be short on options. He’s coming off a game where he threw for 455 yards and three touchdowns in a losing effort.

Ticats head coach Orlondo Steinauer knows his ‘backs need to be at the top of their game against the likes of the Lions’ receivers.

“They’re pretty well rounded,” Steinauer told reporters. “They’re rolling. They’re going to give those receivers opportunities to make plays. They’ve won a bunch of big ball games. They’re playing at home, coming off a loss, they’ll be ready to go. We just have to be sound in what we do and keep them contained.”

When the pass game is that good, the run game doesn’t have to be but that won’t always be the case, so Taquan Mizzell will attempt to improve on the 15 rushing yards he had against the Riders. With the Ticats giving up 126.4 yards on the ground per game, it may just be the matchup Mizzell needs to get going.

Trying to stuff Mizzell will be linebacker Jameer Thurman, who has 55 defensive tackles. First though, he’ll have to make his way through defensive lineman Casey Sayles and his three sacks.

A win for the Lions keeps them on the heels of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, who topped the visiting Montreal Alouettes on Thursday night.

The Ticats are trying to keep from falling further behind Toronto and Montreal in the East Division race.

Watch live. Hamilton Tiger-Cats @ BC Lions, Aug. 27, 01:00 CET (1 am, 7 pm Aug. 26 EDT)

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